Can I be pressed with charges regarding overheated text message exchanges?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I be pressed with charges regarding overheated text message exchanges?

My ex-girlfriend and I both exchanged foul language at each other. Mine was

worse. She wants to press charges against me. Can she? Will she win? No threats, no confrontations, no physical abuse.

Asked on May 26, 2018 under Criminal Law, New Jersey


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

It depends on how many messages, how "foul" they were, etc., but it possible that you could face charges. Under New Jersey law (N.J.S.A. 2C:33-4), it is the disorderly persons offense (the least serious type of crime) of "harassment" if someone "a. Makes, or causes to be made, a communication or communications  . . . at extremely inconvenient hours, or in offensively coarse language, or any other manner likely to cause annoyance or alarm;"
So a series of communications, or communications in sufficiently alarming or offense language, could result in charges.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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