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I plead not guilty to loud party complaint. Should I get a lawyer for trial?

New Brunswick, NJ |

I attended a party last year that had a DJ and so was relatively loud. As I was leaving the party, the cops showed up. They asked for my ID (I was compliant and respectful at all times) and they gave me a "loud party" ticket. The house party wasn't mine and I didn't live in that house. I wasn't being loud either. I plead not guilty today and so it will go to trial. I will be notified of date in the mail. Should I get a lawyer? If not, what should I do? Max fine is $1600. I have a clean record and never went to court for anything before.

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Attorney answers 4


It is always better to have legal representation, however, with the cost of the fine involved and the relatively low grade of the offense I understand an concerns you might have with paying a legal fee. If you go to Court on your own, you should emphasize that you wereonly a guest and had no control over the volume of the DJ

Stew Crawford, Jr., Esq.

Crawford Law Firm
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I think you need to read the ordinace and see what the description is for the offense? If it is vague or overbroad, then make that arguement. In any event, I think you should ask the city attorney to dismiss it now or produce the evidence that shows you were in alleged violation? If you have a witness that you can bring that was with you and show that you were not in violation and that police were just looking to randomly give out tickets you may get a dismissal? There is also a chance, particularly if you can move the date several times, that the issuing officer may not even show up in which case, you report ready for trial and then move for dismissal?

Legal disclaimer:This message does not constitute legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Any statements are made for general informational purposes and do not constitute legal advice. No attorney-client privilege is created by this communication. Attorney is licensed in California only.


Obviously, this is an abbreviated and one side only summary of the facts. You should check to see if there is a written police incident or arrest report, and any other information/documents that should be turned over in discovery. Do you have witnesses? I assume the police noted your residence address when they wrote the ticket. It should be obvious that your address is different from the location where the ticket was issued.
Your odds of winning are better with an atty than wothout. How much that is worth to you and your financial condition is only known to you. You might want to get some fee quotes from local attys and then decide. Dont know how accessible the local district attys office is and if you or an atty would be able to talk to someone there well before the trial and perhaps get the matter dismissed.


not sure why you actually plead to the charges, but at least you plead not guily, hopefully jury election. You should possibly consult with an attorney and ask what they would charge for an appearance in this matter. I am not sure why you haven't worked it out with the prosecutor prior to entering a plea, but it is what it is. You may be able to withdraw the plea with an attorney and work out a deal.

Jeffrey Eric Grabelle

Jeffrey Eric Grabelle


There is no jury election. This offense will be handled in the municipal court, which is quasi-criminal in nature. Sounds like the offense (no pun intended) is a municipal ordinance violation. You should speak with the prosecutor and explain your side of the story. If things don't look like they are going your way, ask for a postponement to get an attorney.