In addition to incarceration, fines, sex offender registration and various other penalties, individuals convicted of various sex-related offenses in New Jersey can also be sentenced to parole supervision for life. This is just like it sounds – being on parole for the rest of your life – but the conditions of parole supervision for life are also more onerous than those of “ordinary” parole. That said, it is important to speak with a New Jersey criminal lawyer as soon as possible if you are facing charges that can lead to parole supervision for life.
Charges That Lead to Parole Supervision for Life
Under Section 2C:43-6.4 of the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice, parole supervision for life is mandatory for individuals convicted of the following sex-related offenses:
- Aggravated sexual assault
- Sexual assault
- Aggravated criminal sexual contact
- Kidnapping (pursuant to Section 2C:13-1.c(2))
- Endangering the welfare of a child by engaging in sexual conduct
- Attempt to commit any of the above
While many of these are first and second-degree indictable offenses that carry the potential for a decade or more behind bars (with a requirement to serve at least 85 percent of your sentence prior to parole eligibility), if you are convicted, you will eventually be eligible for parole and being subject to parole supervision for life can drastically impact your life well beyond your term of imprisonment. If you violate the terms of your parole, you can be charged with a third-degree indictable offense and face an additional three to five years behind bars. Furthermore, incarceration is mandatory for violations of parole supervision for life, “unless the court is clearly convinced that the interests of justice so far outweigh the need to deter this conduct and the interest in public safety that a sentence to imprisonment would be a manifest injustice.”
Terms of Parole Supervision for Life
When you are subject to parole supervision for life, you will be closely scrutinized in all aspects of your life and you will need to seek approval to do things that most people take for granted. The terms of parole supervision for life can include:
- Having to regularly report to a parole officer for life
- Needing to obtain permission to move to a new residence
- Needing to obtain permission before accepting a new job
- Needing to obtain permission to use the Internet (or a device with Internet connectivity)
- Being subject to searches of your belongings, car and residence for cause
- Possibly being listed as a Megan’s Law offender on the internet if you are a Tier 2 or 3 offender, and everyone in your neighborhood being informed with leaflets of your picture, address, and conviction if you are a Tier I offender.
Release from Parole Supervision for Life
It is possible to petition the court for release from parole supervision for life, but only once 15 years have passed since your most recent conviction or release from incarceration. In order to obtain a release, you must also be able to present “clear and convicting” evidence (as determined by the court) that you are not likely to pose a threat to the safety of others.
Speak With a New Jersey Criminal Lawyer About Your Case
Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A. is a New Jersey criminal defense law firm that provides vigorous and aggressive legal representation for individuals charged with sexual assault and other sex-related offenses. If you are facing the possibility of long-term imprisonment and parole supervision for life, our New Jersey criminal lawyer can fight to protect your freedom and your future. To schedule a confidential consultation with one of our highly-experienced criminal defense lawyers, call 1-877-435-6371 or request a consultation online now.