A boy, 10, currently faces weapons charges after authorities said he brought a loaded handgun into his school in New Jersey. The boy's father recently claimed that the boy's family feels embarrassed and disgusted at the situation but that his son did nothing wrong besides not reporting this incident to his school or bus driver. Fortunately, when people in New Jersey are accused of committing gun crimes, they are always presumed innocent until and unless their guilt can be proved in a court of law.
In the case of the 10-year-old boy, authorities said that a handgun was first discovered in a 9-year-old student's backpack one day. It was then later found in the 10-year-old boy's book bag. Police said, apparently, the younger student had brought the weapon to school and then transferred the gun to the older student's backpack.
The father of the older student said the younger student is his son's friend. The father also said that the younger student obtained the gun from beneath a mattress at his home. Both boys were being kept out of school due to the incident.
Whenever people in New Jersey face charges related to gun crimes, they have the right to proceed to trial to fight these charges. However, alternatively, they may seek to negotiate plea deals. In New Jersey, an accomplished defense attorney can file for a Graves Act Waiver in an effort to obtain Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI) for the client or a probationary sentence that would avoid the mandatory prison sentence. The benefit of plea bargaining is that the sentence that a defendant ends up receiving is typically lighter than the sentence that would result from a guilty verdict at trial. Whether a defendant chooses the plea deal or the trial route, an attorney will push for the most personally favorable outcome for him or her given the facts of the criminal case.