Former State Prosecutor

Former Atlantic County Prosecutor

Certified Criminal Trial Attorney

Experienced for over 30 years

Available 24/7

609.345.3300

RECENT DWI & CRIMINAL DEFENSE RESULTS

STATE v. HENDRICKS — NEW JERSEY MURDER TRIAL — “NOT GUILTY” VERDICT

Mr. Tumelty represented Helena Hendricks, who was charged with first degree murder in Atlantic County Superior Court. The defendant faced a number of additional charges, including armed robbery, conspiracy and possession of a handgun for an unlawful purpose. At the conclusion of a jury trial that lasted three weeks, the defendant was found “not guilty” of all charges.

Former State Prosecutor

Former Atlantic County Prosecutor

Certified Criminal Trial Attorney

Experienced for Over 30 years

Other areas we serve

Cyberbullying Laws in New Jersey

As technology evolves, so do outlets for abusive, ugly behavior. It follows that the latest cause for concern around the country is the age of cyberbullying. Unlike physical bullying, cyberbullying often involves psychological harassment that can scar a person on the receiving end for years. Cyberbullying using an electronic format to make threats to cause…Continue Reading

How Social Media Can Potentially Hurt Your Case

Social media has brought about a new age in staying connected to loved ones all around the world. However, unless the right privacy settings are in place, a user’s information is all public knowledge and just a few clicks away. Because this information is public, some of the information found on social media could be…Continue Reading

What Happens if You Aren’t Read Your Rights When Arrested?

An arrest can be a chaotic situation. But no matter how busy or convoluted it can get, law enforcement has guidelines they need to follow. Among those guidelines are reading a person their rights. There is a common misconception that says if a person isn’t read their rights, their entire case gets thrown out or…Continue Reading

Atlantic City NJ Criminal Defense Lawyer Fights to Get Your Criminal Mischief Charges Dismissed


You were joking around with some friends, trying to blow off steam and someone had a dumb idea. One thing led to another and you are now facing criminal mischief charges. While it may seem like no big deal to you, it’s likely that the owner of the property you are accused of damaging doesn’t see it that way. Even a downed mailbox or simple graffiti is costly to fix and an unnecessary hassle to hard-working people who take pride in their stuff.

In fact, in New Jersey a charge of criminal mischief, generally defined damaging property, can actually be viewed by the court as more significant a crime than you may first think. Most acts of vandalism, especially if they can be considered hate crimes, carry severe penalties. If you are found guilty of a 3rd degree criminal mischief offense, you could be facing up to five years in jail.

John W. Tumelty is an experienced criminal defense attorney who knows his way around the courts in Atlantic and Cape May counties. Talk to him about your theft crime charges or criminal mischief charges right away because he may be able to get them reduced or dismissed.

What is Criminal Mischief in New Jersey?

In New Jersey, someone charged with criminal mischief can be facing 3rd degree criminal charges, 4th degree criminal charges or a disorderly persons offense. Each of these crimes has varying penalties attached, but they all have one thing in common: the prosecutor must prove that it was your intention to cause damage. That being said, if damage was caused because someone acted out of anger – for example, a car was keyed or a rock broke a window – a disorderly persons charge could apply.

The law covers both private and public property including buildings, fences, playground equipment, signs, etc. In most cases, even if the damage can be removed by cleaning – such as spray paint or marker – you will still face criminal mischief charges.

John Tumelty has been representing clients charged with criminal mischief for more than 30 years in Atlantic and Cape May counties. A former prosecutor, he knows how to deal with these charges because he understands how the other side thinks. Put his experience to work for you today.

What are the Penalties Associated with Criminal Mischief Charges in New Jersey?

A 3rd degree criminal mischief charge carry a potential sentence of three to five years in state prison. Criminal mischief is considered a 3rd degree offense if:

  • More than $2,000 in damages was incurred
  • Substantial impact on a public transportation, public utility or a communication system occurred
  • A research facility was damages or work at the facility was disrupted
  • The act involved property damage to a grave, cemetery, mausoleum, etc.

A NJ 4th Degree Criminal Mischief Offense carries a potential prison sentence of up to 18 months. You will be charged with a 4th degree crime if:

  • Damage incurred is valued at $500 and $2,000
  • Air traffic devices (signs, signals, lights) are removed or damaged
  • Any damage was caused at an aviation facility including an airport or landing field

The Criminal Mischief charge with the lightest penalty is considered a Disorderly Person Offense. Still you could face up to six months in jail if convicted of this charge.

A disorderly persons offense in New Jersey is defined by:

  • Criminal mischief activity that results in less than $500 in damages
  • Damage caused by fire (not covered under the arson laws)
  • Reckless tampering of property that causes financial loss

Criminal Defense Lawyer John W. Tumelty Will Defend You against Your Charges

As with all criminal charges in New Jersey, the prosecutor must prove the case against you beyond a reasonable doubt. A skilled criminal defense lawyer like Mr. Tumelty knows how to poke holes in criminal mischief cases. Prosecutors, responding to angered property owners, can become overzealous.

Contact John W. Tumelty for a free consultation about your criminal mischief charges. He will listen to what happened, explain your rights and work tirelessly on your behalf to negotiate your case in an effort to get the charges reduced or dismissed. He has offices in Somers Point, Atlantic City and Marmora and represents clients in Brigantine, Margate, Longport, Ventnor, and throughout Atlantic and Cape May counties and beyond.

 

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Atlantic County Offices

ATTORNEY JOHN W. TUMELTY
CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
1 S. NEW YORK AVENUE, SUITE 212
ATLANTIC CITY, NJ 08401

609.345.3300

ATTORNEY JOHN W. TUMELTY
CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
1616 PACIFIC AVENUE, SUITE 318
ATLANTIC CITY, NJ 08401

609.385.4010

ATTORNEY JOHN W. TUMELTY
CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
1555 ZION ROAD, SUITE 203
NORTHFIELD, NJ 08225

609.435.1435

Cape May County Offices

ATTORNEY JOHN W. TUMELTY
CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
539 SOUTH SHORE ROAD
MARMORA, NJ 08223

609.390.4600

ATTORNEY JOHN W. TUMELTY
CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
3318 SIMPSON AVENUE
OCEAN CITY, NJ 08226

609.385.4221

ATTORNEY JOHN W. TUMELTY
CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
100 E RIO GRANDE AVE
WILDWOOD, NJ 08260

609.277.2786

Areas We Serve

Atlantic County Offices

Cape May County Offices

ATTORNEY JOHN W. TUMELTY
CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
539 SOUTH SHORE ROAD
MARMORA, NJ 08223

609.390.4600 Get Directions

ATTORNEY JOHN W. TUMELTY
CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
3318 SIMPSON AVENUE
OCEAN CITY, NJ 08226

609.385.4221 Get Directions

ATTORNEY JOHN W. TUMELTY
CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
100 E RIO GRANDE AVE
WILDWOOD, NJ 08260

609.277.2786 Get Directions

Seasoned criminal defense lawyer John W. Tumelty has three conveniently located offices in Atlantic City, Somers Point and Marmora, NJ. He serves clients in Atlantic, Ocean, Gloucester and Cape May counties and the Jersey Shore, including: Absecon, Atlantic City, Avalon, Cape May, Dennis Township, Egg Harbor Township, Galloway Township, Hamilton Township, Hammonton, Linwood, Lower Township, Margate, Middle Township, Northfield, Ocean City, Pleasantville, Sea Isle City, Somers Point, Stone Harbor, Upper Township, Ventnor and Wildwood.