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State ex rel A.G.

June 6, 2008

STATE OF NEW JERSEY IN THE INTEREST OF A.G., DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.


On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Family Part, Monmouth County, FJ-13-562-07A.

Per curiam.

RECORD IMPOUNDED

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Argued May 13, 2008

Before Judges Cuff and King.

A juvenile delinquency complaint was filed against A.G. on August 14, 2006. The complaint charged him with first-degree aggravated sexual assault, N.J.S.A. 2C:14-2(a)(1) (Count One); second-degree sexual assault, N.J.S.A. 2C:14-2(c)(1) (Counts Two and Three); fourth-degree criminal sexual contact, N.J.S.A. 2C:14-3(b) (Count Four); fourth-degree lewdness, N.J.S.A. 2C:14-4(b)(1) (Count Five); and third-degree endangering the welfare of a child, N.J.S.A. 2C:24-4 (Count Six). From May 9 through 16, 2007 the juvenile appeared for trial before Judge McGann, who adjudicated him delinquent on all charges on May 16, 2007.

On June 15, 2007 Judge McGann sentenced the juvenile to two years probation on Counts One, Two, Three, Four and Six and one year probation on Count Five and imposed a $30 Victims of Crime Compensation Board (VCCB) assessment on each count, and a $15 Law Enforcement Officers Training and Equipment Fund (LEOTF) assessment on Count One. The juvenile's probationary terms were concurrent. As part of the juvenile's probation, Judge McGann ordered him to abide by all requirements of Megan's Law, submit to a psychological evaluation, have no victim contact, and participate in all court ordered evaluations.

I.

Defendant raises two points on this appeal:

POINT I - DEFENDANT'S CONVICTION MUST BE REVERSED BECAUSE JUDGE MCGANN'S FINDINGS OF GUILT BEYOND A REASONABLE DOUBT WERE NOT SUPPORTED BY SUFFICIENT CREDIBLE EVIDENCE IN THE RECORD.

A. [A.'s] Testimony Was Not Credible and Was Insufficient to Support Defendant's Guilt of the Crimes Alleged.

B. There Was No Testimony in the Record Other than [A's] Incredible Testimony to Support Her Allegations.

POINT II - DEFENDANT'S CONVICTION FOR LEWDNESS PURSUANT TO N.J.S.A. 2C:14-4 MUST BE REVERSED BECAUSE PROSECUTION WAS COMMENCED THEREON OUTSIDE THE FIVE YEAR STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS PRESCRIBED BY N.J.S.A. 2C:1-6.

We affirm the convictions as supported by substantial credible evidence in the record, except on Count Five, the lewdness count, which is barred by the statute of limitations because committed before April 6, 1994. The complaint was filed on August 18, 2007, beyond the pertinent five-year period of limitations.

The State presented these facts which the judge found credible. The age differential between the victim and the juvenile was about five years. During the relevant period of the offenses, from 1990 to 1994, the victim was about six to nine years of age and the juvenile was about eleven to fifteen years of age. A.G.'s date of birth was November 19, 1979; the victim's date of birth was October 12, 1984.

The State presented evidence of these facts in this bench trial. For about eighteen years, the juvenile A.G.'s family lived next door to the victim's family in Hazlet. While the victim's mother A.B., and her father worked, the juvenile's mother J. "babysat" the victim, then age six, and the victim's brother A.A. Typically, J. would turn on cartoons for A. and A.A. then fall asleep on the couch. The juvenile, his father, and his brother J.J. were usually home, but still asleep at this time.

One morning, after A.G. awoke, he joined J. in front of the television. A.G. said to A., the victim, that she "was a little teddy bear or something," started tickling her, then touched her breasts and vagina. The victim ...


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