Can Felony Charges Be Dropped?

Posted March 27th, 2023 by .

Categories: Criminal Defense.

man charged with crime

Were you or a loved one arrested and charged with a criminal offense? It is normal to feel stressed, overwhelmed, and unsure of where to turn—especially so if it is a felony charge. You may be wondering: Can a felony charge be dropped? The answer is “yes”—but you will need a strong, well-supported legal strategy to get prosecutors to drop such a serious charge. Here, our Jersey City criminal defense lawyer explains the key things to know about getting felony charges dropped in New Jersey.

What is a Felony Charge in New Jersey? (Indictable Offense)

You will often hear the term “felony” used to refer to criminal charges in New Jersey. However, our state does not use that term in official legal proceedings. Instead, these charges are referred to as “indictable offenses” (NJ Rev Stat § 2C:52-2). In New Jersey, an indictable offense is a serious criminal offense that is equivalent to a felony in other jurisdictions. For the most part, these offenses are handled by the New Jersey Superior Court system and carry a minimum of one year in prison.

A Felony Charge Can Be Dropped

A felony charge (indictable offense) can absolutely be dropped in New Jersey. The charges could be dropped at any point in the process until a conviction has been imposed. That is not to say that getting felony charges dropped is easy—but it is possible in the right circumstances and with the right defense strategy.

Every Case is Unique: Legal Strategies to Get a Felony Charges Dropped in New Jersey

Felony charges should always be defended on a case-by-case basis, with careful attention to the specific allegations and the evidence (or lack thereof). The right approach is a must. Here are some notable defense strategies that may be used to get felony charges dropped:

  • Demonstrate Lack of Probable Cause: In order to move forward with a criminal charge, police and prosecutors must prove probable cause. If they lack evidence to support probable cause, the charges may be dropped at the preliminary stage of the case. 
  • Proof a Violation of Your Constitutional Rights: If your constitutional rights were violated—such as an illegal search—you could take action to get key evidence thrown out of court. Without that evidence, the prosecution may decide to drop the charges. 
  • Accept a Plea Agreement or Other Arrangement: This strategy involves negotiating with the prosecution for a lesser charge or sentence. Doing so could be a good option if the evidence is strong and a conviction is likely. In such cases, accepting a plea deal may result in a lesser sentence or charge, which could be preferable to risking a conviction at trial.

Consult With Our Jersey City Felony Defense Attorney Right Away

At The Law Offices of Anthony Carbone, our New Jersey criminal defense lawyer has the skills, experience, and legal expertise to take on the full range of felony charges. If you were arrested and charged with a felony offense, we are here to protect your rights, freedom, and future. Contact us today for a fully confidential, no-commitment initial consultation. With a law office in Jersey City, we are well-positioned to defend felony criminal charges throughout all of North Jersey.

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