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Vertical Prosecution Arrives in Middlesex County

On June 19, 2003, Middlesex County Prosecutor Bruce Kaplan instituted a new system of prosecution in Middlesex County- vertical prosecution. What is vertical prosecution? Simply put, each case will be handled by the same prosecutorial team from the time a complaint is reviewed and sent to the county level until final disposition of the case. The vertical prosecution method is already in use in the major crimes, sex crimes, fatal accident and special prosecution units of the office and will now be extended to all indictable crimes including, but not limited to: drug cases, burglary, aggravated assault , robbery and credit card crimes. The verticalized complaint management system means that once a Zone Assistant Prosecutor screens a complaint and determines it should be prosecuted at the county level, rather than downgraded to the municipal level, it is assigned to a Trial Team Assistant Prosecutor who will handle that case from pre-indictment plea bargaining and/or grand jury presentation through final disposition by plea, trial or other resolution. Each municipality will be assigned to a particular team that consists of a Zone Assistant Prosecutor, three Trial Assistant Prosecutors (including a Team Leader who plays a supervisory role), a County Investigator, an Agent of the Prosecutor and a Victim-Witness Coordinator. One of the many benefits of the vertical prosecution plan is that all interested parties from local police officers to victims and witnesses will deal with the same representatives of the Middlesex County Prosecutor?s Office from the inception of an indictable charge to its conclusion.

Vertical prosecution has been successful in our specialized units for many years. Vertical prosecution went into effect for all new complaints in Middlesex County beginning August 4, 2003.