Hazing, as defined in N.J.S.A. 2C:40-3 (Hazing; Aggravated Hazing), is the act of knowingly or recklessly organizing, promoting, facilitating, or engaging in conduct other than competitive athletic events that place or may place another person, in connection with initiation of applicants to a student or fraternal organization, in danger of bodily injury.
Hazing is graded as a disorderly persons offense, and conviction can result in a six month jail sentence and a $1,000 fine.
You’ll also have a misdemeanor record that you’ll have to disclose when, for instance, a potential employer asks.
When someone sustains serious bodily injury as a result of hazing, the organizers, promoters, and participants can be charged with aggravated hazing, which is a felony.
As a crime of the fourth degree, you run the risk of spending 18 months in prison and paying fines of $10,000.
Fourth degree crimes carry a presumption of non-incarceration in most cases, so while it’s unlikely that you’ll actually be in state custody for a year and a half, this is still a very serious charge and can close off professional opportunities and create other problems for you for the rest of your life.
If you or your child are facing charges under New Jersey’s Hazing statute, get experienced legal help right away.
Call Matthew Reisig today at 732-625-9661 for your free consultation with an experienced New Jersey criminal defense lawyer.