Eluding - The Basics

Eluding the police in New Jersey can be one of the worst decisions you ever make.
If you are charged with second-degree eluding, you will face between 5-10 years in prison. We understand that every case is different & that you may have a legal defense to this charge. There are circumstances where you can get charged with eluding but either you had no intention of fleeing from the police or you were not the person driving your car. It becomes a case of mistaken identity.

Our criminal defense lawyers have tremendous experience in representing people charged with eluding the police in New Jersey. You benefit from our extensive trial experience. Most importantly, we will be honest about your chances of winning your case. We never guarantee results. However, we do guarantee that we will aggressively fight for you.! 

NJ Eluding Law - 2C:29-2b

Under New Jersey law NJSA 2C:29-2b eluding consists of fleeing or attempting to flee any police or law enforcement officer after having received a signal from that officer to stop.

Very simply, this means that you failed to stop when a police officer ordered you to stop. Instead, you took off. This most commonly occurs during traffic stops. People with weed in their car fear being arrested for a dime bag and try to outrun a police officer during a traffic stop. Unfortunately, your misdemeanor marijuana possession case just became a high felony.

Other examples include a foot chase. For example, the police approach you on the street for questioning in an investigation. They explain that they are detaining you for questioning and you run. Once you receive a police order to stop, you cannot try to escape. If you do, you’ll be facing eluding charges.

Eluding Definition

  • a person is guilty of a disorderly persons offense if he purposely prevents or attempts to prevent a law enforcement officer from effecting an arrest.
  • a person is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree if he, by flight, purposely prevents or attempts to prevent a law enforcement officer from effecting an arrest. 
  • An offense under paragraph (1) or (2) of subsection a. is a crime of the third degree if the person:

Eluding Penalties

New Jersey prosecutors and law enforcement take eluding charges very seriously.

When the police are involved in a high-speed traffic chase, people get hurt. These situations create a very high risk of danger and injury to everyone involved. When you are attempting to elude the police, you put your own life and the lives of police officers in danger.

Frequently, you will see on the news that someone died during a high-speed chase. Sometimes the person who dies is an innocent bystander.

If you injure or kill someone during a high-speed chase or while attempting to elude an officer, you can face other charges including resisting arrest, vehicular manslaughter, or aggravated manslaughter by eluding.

  • (Felony) Second-Degree Offense — Five to 10 years in prison and/or fine of $150,000
  • (Felony) Third-Degree Offense — Three to five years in prison and/or fine of $15,000
  • (Felony) Fourth-Degree Offense — Up to 18 months in prison and/or fine of $10,000
  • (Misdemeanor) Disorderly Persons Offense — Up to six months in prison and/or fine of $1,000
  • License suspension – 6 months – 2 years

Important Eluding Fact

Important: Just because you got away and the police officer could not positively identify you as the driver, there is a "presumption" that as the owner of the car, you were the person who committed the crime of "eluding".
If you are facing eluding charges, don't talk to the police. Let us defend & protect you.

Eluding & Resisting Arrest

Eluding charges and Resisting Arrest charges usually go hand in hand.
We wouldn’t be surprised if you also have Obstruction of Justice Charges.
These three charges are usually bundled together. Unfortunately, the worst charge for you is the Eluding charge.

Eluding - Legal Defenses

If you’ve been charged with eluding in New Jersey, you will have the following choices:

Plead Guilty

You will have to admit what you did under oath. This option will leave you with a criminal conviction. It will stay on your record for years before it can be expunged. And it will show up a background check.

Plead Guilty to a Downgraded Charge

This is one aspect of plea bargaining. Instead of admitting that you committed eluding, we will work out a deal with the prosecutor where you plea guilty to a lesser offense.

Go To Trial & Get Acquitted

This means that the judge or jury listened to all of the evidence & decided that you are not guilty of committing eluding.

Go To Trial & Get Convicted

This means that the judge listened to all of the evidence & decided that you did commit the crime of eluding.

Defenses

There are two main defenses to eluding charges in New Jersey.

The first defense can be summed up as “I was unaware of the police officer’s intention to stop me. I didn’t hear the police sirens and I did not see the lights. I had no intention of fleeing the police.”
As you can imagine, this is a difficult argument to make. However, if it’s true, it’s true. It’s our job to defend & protect you.

The second defense involves a situation where the person driving your car was not you. Even if your car is registered to you, there are many situations where another person could’ve been driving your car. For example, your car may have been stolen or driven by someone other than you.

 

If I'm convicted at trial, can I appeal?

Yes.

Although appeals can be expensive, it’s definitely worth the money to try.
If you feel that you didn’t get a fair trial or that certain evidence was irrelevant or missing, an appeal is a way to go.
We highly recommend that you hire an aggressive, criminal lawyer to represent you for your appeal.
There are specific steps that must be taken to (intelligently) file an appeal.
Please do not try to do this alone, get help!

Our Experience

You or a loved one have been arrested. Understandably, you are terrified & have a lot of questions. You’ve heard about plea bargains & probation, but the process is overwhelming. You want a local attorney near you to represent you.

Mr. Peyrouton is from Ridgewood & handles all types of criminal matters in New Jersey The New Jersey Law Journal recently published one of his articles on the subject of criminal law.

How We Can Help

Regardless of the criminal charges you are facing, we are here to defend & protect you. Whether you are facing a restraining order, drug charge, theft charge, or aggravated assault charge, we are here to help you. Even a DWI case can really complicate your life.

If we can’t get your charges dismissed, we can either get them downgraded or place you in a diversionary program. The point is, our criminal defense lawyers will fight tirelessly to get you the best result possible. Take advantage of our free consultation to see how we can help.

Our Practice Areas

Below, you will find a few of our practice areas.

Areas We Serve

Our Hackensack criminal lawyers represent clients in Bergen County & nearby counties & cities. 

Get Help With Your Case

How Do Your Free Consultations Work?

There are plenty of excellent Hackensack criminal lawyers in our area. Most, if not all of them, offer free, 20-minute, consultations. However, our free consultations do not have a time limit. You will never feel rushed.

The best way for us to help you is to patiently listen to your side of the story. Your version of events will serve as the basis for your legal defense. It is during these initial meetings that your memory of the event is fresh in your mind. Why we would rush you during such an important aspect of your case.

We understand that your choice of attorney could mean the difference between your freedom and spending years behind bars. 

When you hire an attorney, you are entering a long-term relationship. For this reason, it is important that you feel comfortable with the team of Hackensack criminal lawyers that will represent you.

What our clients say about us

Peyrouton Law
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A person extorts if he purposely threatens to:

a. Inflict bodily injury on or physically confine or restrain anyone or commit any other criminal offense;
b. Accuse anyone of an offense or cause charges of an offense to be instituted against any person;
c. Expose or publicize any secret or any asserted fact, whether true or false, tending to subject any person to hatred, contempt or ridicule, or to impair his credit or business repute;
d. Take or withhold action as an official, or cause an official to take or withhold action;
e. Bring about or continue a strike, boycott or other collective action, if the property is not demanded or received for the benefit of the group in whose interest the actor purports to act;
f. Testify or provide information or withhold testimony or information with respect to another’s legal claim or defense; or
g. Inflict any other harm which would not substantially benefit the actor but which is calculated to materially harm another person.

***It is an affirmative defense to prosecution based on paragraphs b, c, d or f that the property obtained was honestly claimed as restitution or indemnification for harm done in the circumstances or as lawful compensation for property or services.

Reasonable Articulable Suspicion

Reasonable suspicion is a “search” standard that applies in criminal law.

When a police officer conducts a warrantless search, and does not have probable cause to justify the search, the courts look to see if the police had
a “reasonable & articulable suspicion” for the search.

A mere “hunch” is not enough.

In other words, a police officer has to provide an acceptable explanation for the search.

United States Constitution

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

NJSA - 2C:43-7.2.
Eligibility for parole;
persons convicted of certain violent crimes

a. A court imposing a sentence of incarceration for a crime of the first or second degree enumerated in subsection d. of this section shall fix a minimum term of 85% of the sentence imposed, during which the defendant shall not be eligible for parole.


b. The minimum term required by subsection a. of this section shall be fixed as a part of every sentence of incarceration imposed upon every conviction of a crime enumerated in subsection d. of this section, whether the sentence of incarceration is determined pursuant to N.J.S.2C:43-6, N.J.S.2C:43-7, N.J.S.2C:11-3 or any other provision of law, and shall be calculated based upon the sentence of incarceration actually imposed. The provisions of subsection a. of this section shall not be construed or applied to reduce the time that must be served before eligibility for parole by an inmate sentenced to a mandatory minimum period of incarceration. Solely for the purpose of calculating the minimum term of parole ineligibility pursuant to subsection a. of this section, a sentence of life imprisonment shall be deemed to be 75 years.


c. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary and in addition to any other sentence imposed, a court imposing a minimum period of parole ineligibility of 85 percent of the sentence pursuant to this section shall also impose a five-year term of parole supervision if the defendant is being sentenced for a crime of the first degree, or a three-year term of parole supervision if the defendant is being sentenced for a crime of the second degree. The term of parole supervision shall commence upon the completion of the sentence of incarceration imposed by the court pursuant to subsection a. of this section unless the defendant is serving a sentence of incarceration for another crime at the time he completes the sentence of incarceration imposed pursuant to subsection a., in which case the term of parole supervision shall commence immediately upon the defendant’s release from incarceration. During the term of parole supervision the defendant shall remain in release status in the community in the legal custody of the Commissioner of the Department of Corrections and shall be supervised by the State Parole Board as if on parole and shall be subject to the provisions and conditions

Felony Degree

Prison & Fines

Examples

First-Degree

1st-degree felony charges in NJ are reserved for the most serious criminal offenses. Prison terms start at a minimum of 10 years in prison.

Second-Degree

2nd-degree felony charges carry 5-10 yrs in prison.
These charges can often be “downgraded” to 3rd or 4th-degree crimes.

Third-Degree

3rd-degree felony charges carry 3-5 years.
You have a good shot at PTI if you are charged with a 3rd-degree.

Fourth-Degree

4th-degree felony charges carry up to 18 months in jail. These cases can get “remanded” to a lower court. In this way, you will be out of “felony” danger.