STATE OF NEW JERSEY VS. SUSAN HYLAND
The State appeals a special probation Drug Court sentence imposed under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-14 following defendant's conviction for second-degree leaving the scene of a fatal accident, N.J.S.A. 2C:11-5.1, third-degree causing death while driving with a suspended or revoked license, N.J.S.A. 2C:40-22(a); and third-degree endangering an injured victim, N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1.2(a). The State contends the court erred in its assessment of the factors required for imposition of a special probation sentence under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-14.
The court concludes it is without jurisdiction to hear the appeal, finding the State lacked authority to appeal because the sentence is not illegal and N.J.S.A. 2C:35-14 does not authorize the State to appeal a special probation sentence. The court rejects the contention that N.J.S.A. 2C:44-1(f)(2) authorizes the State's appeal because defendant received a probationary sentence for a second-degree crime that is otherwise subject to a presumption of imprisonment under N.J.S.A. 2C:44-1(d). The court determines that the State's appeal authorized by N.J.S.A. 2C:44-1(f)(2) is limited to challenges to sentencing determinations under N.J.S.A. 2C:44-1(d), and does not apply to sentencing decisions made under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-14.