Reviewing Courts Should Defer to Mun Ct. Fact Findings – State v. Williams (UNP)

In this UNPUBLISHED decision, the Appellate Division once again reviews the procedures on appeals from a guilty finding in municipal court and stresses that the reviewing courts should defer to the factual findings made by the municipal court judge.

This holding is inconsistent with State v. Johnson, 42 N.J. 146 (1964) where the Justices required the Law Division to make independent findings of fact giving due, although not necessarily controlling, regard for the ability of the municipal court judge to determine credibility. The Appellate Division’s opinion today can be regarded as an interesting expansion of the Supreme Court’s decision on credibility issues in State v. LoCurto, 157 N.J. 463 (1999) upon which it relies.

Download a copy of this UNPUBLISHED decision

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