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When Can You Appeal a Criminal Conviction in New Jersey State Court?

April 9, 2021 | Posted In Criminal Law

If you have been convicted of a crime in New Jersey, this does not necessarily mean that your case is over. You could have grounds to file an appeal. There are several potential grounds for challenging a criminal conviction under New Jersey law, and you will need to speak with an experienced New Jersey criminal lawyer to find out what grounds (if any) you have available.

7 Potential Grounds for Appealing a Criminal Conviction in New Jersey

Here are seven potential grounds to appeal a criminal conviction in New Jersey:

1. Newly-Discovered Evidence

In certain circumstances, if new evidence comes to light following a criminal trial, that would be the basis for a PCR (Post Conviction Relief) application, not an appeal, unless the PCR which is filed at the trial court level is denied.  

2. Improper Grant or Denial of a Pre-Trial Motion

If the judge presiding over your case improperly denied a motion to exclude evidence or another motion your attorney filed prior to trial, this could provide grounds for an appeal. The same is true if the judge improperly granted a motion filed by the prosecution.

3. Improper Exclusion of Evidence

Improperly excluding evidence during trial can provide the basis for an appeal in New Jersey. For example, if the judge refused to allow you to present a key witness’ testimony or proof of an alibi, you may have grounds to file an appeal.

4. Improper Admission of Evidence

If police or prosecutors obtained evidence in violation of your constitutional rights, this evidence may have been legally inadmissible in your criminal case. If your New Jersey criminal lawyer filed an appropriate motion that the judge denied during the trial, you may be able to file an appeal based on the improper admission of evidence.

5. Improper Jury Instructions

Improper jury instructions can also serve as grounds for a criminal appeal. For example, if the judge failed to explain the correct legal standard or instruct jurors to ignore inadmissible evidence, you may be able to file an appeal based on improper jury instructions. There are several other possibilities as well.

6. Misconduct by the Prosecutor

During criminal trials, prosecutors must advise the defense of the existence of evidence that could help their case, and they must otherwise comply with the relevant court rules and rules of professional practice. Failure to do so can provide grounds for an appeal.

7. Excessive or Unreasonable Sentence

Finally, if you received an excessive or unreasonable sentence, you may be able to appeal the outcome of your New Jersey criminal case based on the Eighth Amendment prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.

Discuss Your Appeal with a New Jersey Criminal Lawyer at Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A.

Were you recently convicted of a crime in New Jersey state court? If so, the New Jersey criminal attorneys at Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A. can assess your options for filing an appeal. To schedule a confidential consultation as soon as possible, call 877-435-6371 or tell us how we can contact you online now.

Over 20 attorneys at HCK have extensive experience in defending criminal cases as they were former assistant prosecutors and/or police officers for a combined total of over 600 years of law enforcement experience. You can find out more about them on our site, and you can call Managing Partner Ron Helmer on his cell phone at 609 685-0665.

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