State In The Interest Of G.M.C.

2019 WL 2486221 (2019)


Both D and Mary were sixteen. Approximately thirty adolescents attended a pajama-themed party where alcohol was consumed. Parts of the basement where the party took place were blocked off. After engaging in 'heavy petting,' D and Mary walked into a closed-off darkened area. D who had no prior delinquency history, was drunk. Mary was also visibly drunk, her speech was slurred, and she stumbled as she walked. A group of boys had sprayed Febreze on Mary's bottom and slapped it with such force that the following day she had hand marks on her buttocks. Mary and D had intercourse in the darkened room. D filmed himself penetrating Mary from behind on his cell phone, displaying her bare torso, and her head hanging down. He forwarded the clip to several friends; only one said it showed Mary's head hitting repeatedly against the wall. D sent the following text to his friends: 'When your first time having sex was rape.' D left the room when he was finished. Some of D’s friends checked on Mary and immediately told Mary's friends that she was ill. Mary was on the floor vomiting. She continued to be sick until driven home by a friend's mother. Mary had a lot of questions as to what happened but not many answers. Over several months, Mary learned that D's video had been circulated among his friends and their mutual acquaintances. D denied having recorded the encounter and said that their friends were lying. Mary's mother contacted the authorities. After securing clearance from his sergeant, the first investigating officer urged D and his friends to all delete the video, which apparently they did. Mary pressed criminal charges and P recommended that this case be submitted for consideration for involuntary waiver to the Law Division. P had sufficient probable cause to charge D with aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault pursuant to the new waiver statute, as well as invasion of privacy and endangering the welfare of a child. P claimed that D's conduct as it relates to the charged offenses was both sophisticated and predatory. He was aware of the off-limits areas in advance of the party. Mary was visibly intoxicated and unable to walk without stumbling. Filming a cell phone video while committing the assault was a deliberate act of debasement. D lied to Mary while simultaneously disseminating the video and unabashedly sharing the nature of his conduct therein. Td's behavior was calculated and cruel. The judge denied the motion. Eventually, the court stated that D comes from a good family who put him into an excellent school where he was doing extremely well. He is clearly a candidate for not just college but probably for a good college. His scores for college entry were very high. The judge also detailed D.'s extracurricular activities, including being an Eagle scout. Also, the prosecutor did not indicate in the memorandum that she had explained to Mary and her mother the devastating effect a waiver would have on D.'s life. It denied the motion to transfer and P appealed. P contends that the judge erred in denying the waiver motion because, in the process, he substituted his judgment for that of P.