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In re State ex rel J.A.

December 24, 2008

STATE OF NEW JERSEY IN THE INTEREST OF J.A.


On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Family Part, Sussex County, FJ-19-1030-97, FJ-19-196-95.

Per curiam.

RECORD IMPOUNDED

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted December 9, 2008

Before Judges Winkelstein and Fuentes.

Defendant, J.A., appeals from Judge Gannon's denial of his petition for post-conviction relief. On appeal, he raises the following issues for our consideration:

POINT I

THE ORDER DENYING POST-CONVICTION RELIEF SHOULD BE REVERSED AND THE DEFENDANT SHOULD BE RELEASED FROM HIS CIVIL COMMITMENT UNDER THE SEXUALLY VIOLENT PREDATOR ACT (RAISED IN PART BELOW AND NOT RAISED IN PART BELOW).

(A) THE COURT ERRED IN FINDING DEFENDANT'S PETITION TO BE PROCEDURALLY BARRED BECAUSE THE PETITION WAS COGNIZABLE IN POST-CONVICTION RELIEF UNDER THE "DIRECT REVIEW" STANDARD ARTICULATED IN STATE V. BELLAMY (RAISED IN PART BELOW).

(B) THE COURT ERRED IN DENYING POST-CONVICTION RELIEF BECAUSE THE DEFENDANT'S CIVIL COMMITMENT VIOLATES THE EX POST FACTO CLAUSE OF THE UNITED STATES AND NEW JERSEY CONSTITUTIONS (NOT RAISED BELOW).

(C) THE COURT ERRED IN DENYING POST-CONVICTION RELIEF BECAUSE THE DEFENDANT'S CIVIL COMMITMENT VIOLATED THE DEFENDANT'S CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO DUE PROCESS AND EQUAL PROTECTION OF THE LAWS (NOT RAISED BELOW).

POINT II

THE ORDER DENYING POST-CONVICTION RELIEF SHOULD BE REVERSED BECAUSE THE DEFENDANT DID NOT RECEIVE EFFECTIVE ASSISTANCE OF ...


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