Senator DIANE B. ALLEN
District 7 (Burlington and Camden)
Clarifies that "entering" a public place for a drug deal is conduct included in C.2C:33-2.1.
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
An Act concerning entering a public place for the purpose of obtaining or distributing controlled dangerous substances and amending P.L.1991, c.383.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. Section 1 of P.L.1991, c.383 (C.2C:33-2.1) is amended to read as follows:
1. a. As used in this section:
"Public place" means any place to which the public has access, including but not limited to a public street, road, thoroughfare, sidewalk, bridge, alley, plaza, park, recreation or shopping area, public transportation facility, vehicle used for public transportation, parking lot, public library or any other public building, structure or area.
b. A person, whether on foot, on or in a non-motorized means of conveyance or in a motor vehicle, commits a disorderly persons offense if (1) he approaches, enters, wanders, remains or prowls in a public place with the purpose of unlawfully obtaining or distributing a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog; and (2) engages in conduct that, under the circumstances, manifests a purpose to obtain or distribute a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog.
c. Conduct that may, where warranted under the circumstances, be deemed adequate to manifest a purpose to obtain or distribute a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog includes, but is not limited to, conduct such as the following:
(1) Repeatedly beckoning to or stopping pedestrians or motorists in a public place;
(2) Repeatedly passing objects to or receiving objects from pedestrians or motorists in a public place;
(3) Repeatedly circling in a public place in a motor vehicle and on one or more occasions passing any object to or receiving any object from a person in a public place.
d. The element of the offense described in paragraph (1) of subsection b. of this section may not be established solely by proof that the actor engaged in the conduct that is used to satisfy the element described in paragraph (2) of subsection b. of this section.
(cf: P.L.1991, c.383)
2. This act shall take effect immediately.
This bill amends N.J.S.A.2C:33-2.1, which pertains to loitering for the purpose of illegally using, possessing or selling controlled dangerous substances, to clarify that "entering" a public place to meet another person for the purpose of making a drug connection is included within the conduct which constitutes the offense. In State v. Kazanes, 318 N.J. Super. 421 (App. Div. 1999), the Appellate Court reversed a trial court decision convicting a defendant of the disorderly persons offense of "wandering" with the purpose of unlawfully obtaining or distributing a controlled dangerous substances in violation of N.J.S.A.2C:33-2.1. The Appellate Court ruled that there was insufficient evidence that defendant "lingered" or "wandered," as required by the statute.