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kc17

Good call from Appeals Court

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I did a search for the Defendants name assuming the case had been discussed here, but nothing came up.

"In her appeal, Vertetis argued that Superior Court Judge Stephen Taylor was mistaken when telling jurors that she had a duty to retreat if she was in danger and that this could derail her self-defense claim.

In fact, her attorney argued that she had no obligation to retreat under the “castle” doctrine, which says that deadly force is justified when defending yourself in your own home.

The appellate court agreed with that point.

“The (jury) charge not only omitted the ‘castle’ exception but expressly told the jurors — in no uncertain terms — that self-defense is not available to defendant if she could have safely retreated or was the initial aggressor. That mistake easily could have permeated the jury’s consideration of self-defense, not only with respect to the murder count but also the lesser-included homicide offenses," the appeals court wrote in its decision released Wednesday.

The appeals court vacated the murder conviction and ordered a new trial."

https://www.nj.com/morris/2020/03/teacher-sentenced-to-30-years-for-killing-boyfriend-a-retired-cop-wins-new-trial.html

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That kind of clears up something that I've wondered about. I know NJ law says duty to retreat and have read that NJ is a castle doctrine state and it always sounded like a contradiction. So is this the first time this has come up? And is it now precedent  castle doctrine supersedes duty to retreat in your home? 

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The way I am reading it, that was the issue. In the Judge's instructions to the Jury he said she had a duty to retreat, which is not correct.

2C:3-4 Use of force in self-protection. (i)The actor is not obliged to retreat from his dwelling, unless he was the initial aggressor; and

https://law.justia.com/codes/new-jersey/2013/title-2c/section-2c-3-4/

I believe there needs to be consequences against the Judge in the original case.

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1 hour ago, kc17 said:

The way I am reading it, that was the issue. In the Judge's instructions to the Jury he said she had a duty to retreat, which is not correct.

2C:3-4 Use of force in self-protection. (i)The actor is not obliged to retreat from his dwelling, unless he was the initial aggressor; and

https://law.justia.com/codes/new-jersey/2013/title-2c/section-2c-3-4/

I believe there needs to be consequences against the Judge in the original case.

Agree.

Judge needs censure of some kind.

Glad the appellate judge got it right.

I'll retreat to my home.  Beyond that there is no retreat...

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6 hours ago, kc17 said:

The way I am reading it, that was the issue. In the Judge's instructions to the Jury he said she had a duty to retreat, which is not correct.

2C:3-4 Use of force in self-protection. (i)The actor is not obliged to retreat from his dwelling, unless he was the initial aggressor; and

https://law.justia.com/codes/new-jersey/2013/title-2c/section-2c-3-4/

I believe there needs to be consequences against the Judge in the original case.

He should be fined and suspended from the bench for such a gross disregard of the law.. 

 

Everything he said is clearly contradicted by written law. 

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It is not easy to remove or even censure a judge in NJ.  Click on link and scroll down to NJ,

http://www.judicialselection.com/judicial_selection/methods/removal_of_judges.cfm?state

Judges are among those who have a certain type of immunity.  You can't sue a judge for an incorrect ruling or omission.  If you could who would want to take a job as a judge?

She can get twice the amount she was earning the year before her conviction for each year she was in prison or $50,000 a year, whichever is greater.

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1 hour ago, DirtyDigz said:

Judge Stephen Taylor is up for re-appointment this year:

https://ballotpedia.org/Stephen_J._Taylor

Who appoints superior court judges?  The governor?

 

1 hour ago, WP22 said:

The governor.

 

27 minutes ago, njJoniGuy said:

And confirmed by the State Senate

 

1 hour ago, WP22 said:

The governor.

 

 

15 minutes ago, njJoniGuy said:

And confirmed by the State Senate

 

Which is like a Rubber Stamp!

image.png.2f38e3b25346f55fd4e992c060891b5a.png

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4 hours ago, GRIZ said:

 

Judges are among those who have a certain type of immunity.  You can't sue a judge for an incorrect ruling or omission.  If you could who would want to take a job as a judge?

 

He should at the very least have to explain his rational to their ethics board. 

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When questioned by the D-led Senate Judiciary Committee, he'll say "I thought that's the way you guys wanted the law interpreted? Am I right??"

They'll pin a medal on him, confirm his appointment for another term, and send him happily on his way to continue to abuse the Second Amendment of the US Constitution, which none of them believe in anyway.

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3 hours ago, JackDaWack said:

He should at the very least have to explain his rational to their ethics board. 

Only if the governor or majority of the legislature ask for it and the review  board asks for a hearing.  Don't think that's going to happen.

I agree this was not a simple error or omission.  

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