by Bernard d'Agesci
via Wikimedia Commons
NarrativeOn November 7, 2012, Hon. James W. Palmer, J.S.C., rejected a plea agreement between the State of New Jersey and defendant Stephen Headley, according to courierpostonline.com.
On June 5, 2012, Headley pleaded guilty to the murder of Nicole Ayres, according to philly.com.
At the guilty plea, Judge Palmer indicated he would likely sentence Headley to 30 years State Prison without parole, as reported by philly.com.
But Judge Palmer changed his mind, and instead rejected the deal brought before him by the State and the defense.
Sources of Authority
New Jersey Rules of CourtCourts in the Garden State may vacate a defendant's guilty plea. If this happens, the defendant has the right to withdraw the plea. New Jersey Rules of Court provide:
If at the time of sentencing the court determines that the interests of justice would not be served by effectuating the agreement reached by the prosecutor and defense counsel or by imposing sentence in accordance with the court's previous indications of sentence, the court may vacate the plea or the defendant shall be permitted to withdraw the plea.
R. 3:9-3(e) (2012).
New Jersey Rules of EvidenceAny defendant who exercises his right to trial under these circumstances will not face the evidence of the guilty plea at trial. New Jersey Rules of Evidence provide:
[E]videnceExperienced New Jersey Criminal Defense Lawyer Michael Smolensky, Esquire, knows how to protect his clients. Mr. Smolensky can provide consultations on any case regarding pleading guilty and withdrawal. Call Now—(856) 812-0321.
- of a plea of guilty which was later withdrawn,
- of any statement made in the course of that plea proceeding, and
- of any statement made during plea negotiations
is not admissible in any civil or criminal proceeding against the person who made the plea or statement or who was the subject of the plea negotiations.
- no guilty plea resulted or
- a guilty plea was later withdrawn,
N.J.R.E. 410 (2012).
Law Office of Michael A. Smolensky LLC on the World Wide Web.