Any person charged with luring or enticing a child in New Jersey is facing serious consequences if convicted. A luring offense under N.J.S.A. 2C:13-6 is considered a sex crime, which can result in a lengthy term of imprisonment and registration as a sex offender. Clearly, being a documented sex offender can be devastating for you and those you love, not to mention it can affect your ability to obtain employment, housing, and many other opportunities. If you or someone you love has been charged with luring or attempting to lure a child in New Jersey, you should be aware of the consequences and seek informed legal representation immediately. Our seasoned attorneys defend clients charged with luring, endangering the welfare of a child, criminal sexual contact, and other sex crimes in Union County and across New Jersey, and we are prepared to handle the charges against you. With local offices in Cranford, our criminal defense practice serves all communities in Union County, including Elizabeth, Mountainside, Berkeley Heights, Garwood, Clark, Roselle Park, and Union Township. Get answers to your questions about a luring case and find out how we can help you by contacting us today. A lawyer is available immediately to assist you at (908) 838-0150.
What does Luring a Child Mean in New Jersey?
Under N.J.S.A. 2C:13-6, the official charge is entitled “Luring, enticing child by various means, attempts.” In New Jersey, a person can be convicted of luring if the state proves several essential elements of this offense. First, the state must prove that the defendant attempted to lure a child by electronic or any other means, into a motor vehicle, isolated area, or any other place. Further, the prosecutor must prove that the actor attempted to lure the child with the purpose of committing a criminal act against the child. A common example of luring occurs when a person contacts a child, or someone whom the actor believes to be a child, using the internet, with the intent to commit sexual conduct of some kind with them.
It is not a defense that the person on the other side of the interaction was not, in fact, a child. All that matters in obtaining a conviction is that the offender believed that the person was a child. In New Jersey, a child is defined as anyone under the age of 18. In these cases, the evidence may be easier to produce, as there is often text or internet communications documenting the document. Essentially, conversations can be presented as proof that the person is guilty of luring or attempting to lure a child. If convicted of luring, a defendant faces a myriad of serious consequences, including state prison and mandatory sex offender registration.
What can I be Sentenced to for Luring Charges in NJ?
Luring or enticing a child is a second degree crime in New Jersey. If convicted, a second degree crime carries a presumption of incarceration of 5-10 years. In other words, a person found guilty of luring is likely to be sentenced to NJ state prison for a minimum of 5 years. Under certain circumstances, a plea arrangement can involve a lesser prison sentence. In other circumstances, however, a mandatory minimum term of state prison is required by law. For instance, if you have already been convicted of luring or enticing charges and you are charged with a second or subsequent offense, New Jersey dictates that you must serve a mandatory minimum prison term.
Specifically, a second or subsequent luring offense will result in a defendant being sentenced to “a mandatory minimum term of one-third to one-half of the sentence imposed, or three years, whichever is greater,” during which they are not eligible for parole. Most jail sentences are “flat” sentences, meaning that you would be eligible for parole in a minimum amount of time. Conversely, in luring cases involving two or more offenses, the law requires you to be sentenced to a mandatory minimum time in jail before you are eligible for parole. This type of sentence is considered jail time with a “stip,” which stands for term for “stipulation of parole ineligibility.” For example, if you were sentenced to 5 years in prison for the second offense of luring, you would have to serve 3 full years before you were even eligible for parole.
Beyond prison time, you also face a fine of up to $150,000 for luring or enticing a child. In addition, luring is subject to sex offender registration requirements under New Jersey’s Megan’s Law. Once you are registered as a sex offender, you are typically ineligible for removal for at least 15 years.
How do People get Arrested for Luring?
A variety of television programs have been designed to catch this type of “predator,” documenting the crime for viewers. Often in these news programs, an adult offender uses communications via the internet to contact who he believes to be a child. The offender continues to communicate with the child with the intention of eventually meeting and committing some sexual act against the child. The reality is that the person on whom the offender believes to be a child is often a female detective posing as a child with the intention of arresting them. The detective arranges to meet the offender at a previously agreed upon location and, upon meeting, the offender is promptly arrested.
Elizabeth NJ Luring Lawyers
If you or someone you know has been charged with luring, it is crucial to obtain an attorney who can thoroughly review the matter and assist you in defending your case. Enhanced penalties are often handed down for luring charges, and the harsh consequences of a conviction can change your life as you know it. Whether you have been arrested in Hillside, Rahway, Kenilworth, Westfield or another location in Union County, NJ, our sex crimes attorneys have the knowledge and skill you want on your side in court. Contact our local office in Cranford at (908) 838-0150 to discuss your case. We provide consultations free of charge. You can also schedule an appointment to discuss how we can be of assistance in fighting this serious charge.
Our phones are answered 24 hours a day. We are available weekdays during business hours. We also meet with clients on evenings and weekends by request. We have four office locations conveniently located in Mount Laurel, Point Pleasant, Princeton and Middletown. All major credit cards are accepted