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State In Interest of K.B.

October 27, 1997

STATE OF NEW JERSEY IN THE INTEREST OF K.B., A JUVENILE


On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Family Part, Monmouth County.

Approved for Publication October 27, 1997.

Before Judges Havey, Kestin and Eichen. The opinion of the court was delivered by Kestin, J.A.D.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Kestin

The opinion of the court was delivered by

KESTIN, J.A.D.

The juvenile defendant, K.B., aged thirteen, pled guilty to a course of conduct which, if charged against an adult, would have constituted repeated instances of first degree aggravated sexual assault. The victim was K.B.'s step-brother, eight years old when the conduct began. The children lived in the same household.

Forty days after the matter was adjudicated and a Disposition ordered, a motion was filed on K.B.'s behalf to modify and clarify the Dispositional order to provide, inter alia... , that he be exempted from the disclosure provisions of N.J.S.A. 2A:4A-60. The State objected to the request regarding non-disclosure both as untimely and with respect to its merits. After the trial court determined that the necessary threshold showing had been made through documents submitted, a hearing was held.

At the hearing, the court heard testimony from two therapists, Howard D. Silverman, Ph.D., K.B.'s treating psychologist, and Elliot Katz, M.S.W., who was treating the victim. On the basis of that testimony, Judge Kreizman rendered an oral opinion. He found this case to be

[no] different than most cases of young people who are charged with sexual offenses.

[N.J.S.A. 2A:4A-60f] carves out an opportunity for the juvenile to demonstrate a substantial likelihood that specific and extraordinary harm would result from such disclosure in a specific case. And that is the only area where this Court has some discretion.

The other areas, the time of the charge, adjudication, Disposition, information as to the identity of the juvenile charged with an offense, the offense charged, the adjudication and Disposition shall, upon request, be disclosed to the victim or a member of the victim's family. The law enforcement or prosecuting agency shall, at the time of the charge, adjudication or Disposition, advise the principal of the school where the juvenile is enrolled of the identity of the juvenile charged, the offense charged, the adjudication and the Disposition thereof. That's shall. The Prosecutor doesn't have any power not to do that, nor does the court have any power to order him not to do that.

The offenses committed by an adult would constitute a crime. It's one of the conditions. It tells what the principal can do under the statute.

Information as to the identity of an adjudicated delinquent, the offense, the adjudication and the Disposition shall be disclosed to the public where the offense for which a juvenile has been adjudicated delinquent if committed by an adult would constitute a crime of the first, second or third degree[,]. . . . unless upon application at the time of Disposition the juvenile demonstrates a substantial likelihood that specific and extraordinary harm would result from such disclosure in this specific case.

Where the court finds that disclosure would be harmful to the juvenile, the reasons therefor ...


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