Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Official citation and/or docket number and footnotes (if any) for this case available with purchase.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

State of New Jersey v. Lee M. Marchetti

SUPERIOR COURT OF NEW JERSEY APPELLATE DIVISION


January 12, 2011

STATE OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
LEE M. MARCHETTI, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.

On appeal from Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Monmouth County, Indictment No. 09-03-0656.

Per curiam.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted December 14, 2010

Before Judges Graves and Waugh.

Defendant Lee Marchetti appeals from an order dated November 13, 2009, denying his motion for admission into a pretrial intervention (PTI) program. Despite a favorable recommendation by the PTI coordinator, the Monmouth County Prosecutor opposed defendant's application. Defendant contends that the prosecutor's decision to reject his PTI application was a patent and gross abuse of discretion. We do not agree.

On March 26, 2009, when he was eighteen years old, defendant pled guilty to third-degree terroristic threats in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:12-3(b). In exchange for the plea, the State agreed to recommend a period of non-custodial probation with conditions. During the hearing, defendant testified as follows:

MR. LANE [DEFENDANT'S ATTORNEY:] . . . Mr. Marchetti, February 12th, 2009, were you in the Borough of Tinton Falls?

THE DEFENDANT: Yes.

MR. LANE: You wanted to rent a car that day; correct?

THE DEFENDANT: Yeah.

MR. LANE: And your mother wouldn't sign for you to rent a car; correct?

THE DEFENDANT: No.

MR. LANE: And you couldn't rent it by yourself because you were under the age of 25; correct?

THE DEFENDANT: Yes.

MR. LANE: Okay. You had an argument with your mother that day; correct?

THE DEFENDANT: Yeah, yes.

A-3578-09T2

MR. LANE: Okay. On this same day, you threatened to commit a crime of violence against your mother; correct?

THE DEFENDANT: Yes.

MR. LANE: Okay. And you also broke the windows out of a car that day; correct?

THE DEFENDANT: Yes.

MR. LANE: And so, you agree you committed the offense of terroristic threats, and that the threats you made to your mother were under circumstances that made a reasonable person, and specifically your mother, believe that you could carry them out?

THE DEFENDANT: Yes.

MR. LANE: That's all I have, Your Honor.

THE COURT: Ms. Bycsek?

MS. BYCSEK [ASSISTANT PROSECUTOR:] Yes, please. You also indicated . . . the threats were directed toward other family members as well; is that correct?

THE DEFENDANT: Yeah.

Defendant was sentenced on December 4, 2009, to probation for one year with the following conditions: (1) complete anger management treatment; (2) obtain a psychiatric evaluation and follow all recommendations; and (3) cooperate with prescribed medications given by doctors. In addition, defendant was ordered to either maintain full-time employment or to attend school.

Given "the close relationship of the PTI program to the prosecutor's charging authority, courts allow prosecutors wide latitude in deciding whom to divert into the PTI program and whom to prosecute through a traditional trial." State v. Negran, 178 N.J. 73, 82 (2003) (citing State v. Nwobu, 139 N.J. 236, 246 (1995)). That deference to the prosecutor has been described as "'enhanced' or 'extra' in nature." Ibid. (quoting State v. Baynes, 148 N.J. 434, 443 (1997)). Consequently, judicial review of PTI denials "serves to check only the 'most egregious examples of injustice and unfairness.'" Ibid.

(quoting State v. Leonardis, 73 N.J. 360, 384 (1977)). "A defendant attempting to overcome a prosecutorial veto [of PTI admission] must 'clearly and convincingly establish that the prosecutor's refusal to sanction admission into a PTI program was based on a patent and gross abuse of his discretion' before a court can suspend criminal proceedings under Rule 3:28 without prosecutorial consent." Ibid. (quoting Nwobu, supra, 139 N.J. at 246).

In the present matter, defendant submitted considerable written material in support of his PTI application. Our review of this material confirms the presence of positive factors which would support a decision to admit defendant to PTI. Nevertheless, the prosecutor found that defendant was "an inappropriate candidate for PTI" because the "negative factors significantly outweigh the positive."

After carefully considering the facts of the case and the applicable law, Judge Ronald Reisner determined that the prosecutor's decision to reject defendant's application for PTI "was not arbitrary, irrational or otherwise an abuse of discretion." Based on our independent review of the record, we are satisfied the matter was correctly decided. We agree that the prosecutor's decision was neither arbitrary nor unreasonable, and it certainly was not a patent and gross abuse of discretion.

Affirmed.

20110112

© 1992-2011 VersusLaw Inc.



Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Official citation and/or docket number and footnotes (if any) for this case available with purchase.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.