Richard E.A. Nunes is currently employed by the Bergen County, Office of The Public Defender. He serves as the sole staff attorney assigned to Bergen County’s Juvenile Court.
From November 2006 - July 2014, Mr. Nunes served as a jurist on the Newark Municipal Court Bench. In November 2006, he was installed as a Newark Municipal Court Judge, and in 2007, he was assigned to the Court’s Criminal Arraignment Court. There he arraigned defendants, conducted bail hearings, revised time payment orders, accepted pleas and presided over trials of various case types. In 2008, Mr. Nunes was appointed as the Newark Municipal Court’s Acting Chief Judge, and in 2011, he was appointed as the Court’s Chief Judge.
Mr. Nunes was honored to serve as the Chief Judge of the Newark Municipal Court. It is the largest municipal court in the State of New Jersey and one of the largest in the United States. It has twelve full time judges and over one hundred employees. The Court is in operation seven days a week and conducts evening and day sessions on weekdays. The Court addresses over 500,000 traffic, DWI, criminal, domestic violence, housing, and city ordinance cases annually.
As Chief Judge, Mr. Nunes worked diligently on behalf of the Court, not only to provide effective case management and customer service but he also implemented procedures to stop recidivism by addressing its underlying root causes. As such, he implemented the first Community Court in the State of New Jersey, Newark Community Solutions, which is a problem-solving Court for nonviolent offenders that focus on the root causes and needs of the defendant while addressing the wrongs the defendant caused in the community. Newark Community Solutions has its own onsite Clinic, as well as a Veterans and Mental Health Initiative.
Prior to Mr. Nunes’ installment as a Judge, he was employed for nine and a half years by the Office of the Public Defender in its Bergen Region. At the Bergen County Public Defender’s Office, Mr. Nunes initially worked in the Trial Section as an Assistant Deputy, Public Defender participating in all aspects of criminal trial practice including its motion practice, jury trials, Krol hearings and violation of probation hearings. He later assisted in the implementation of Bergen County’s first Drug Court where he became its first Public Defender.
Mr. Nunes began his secondary education at the College of the Holy Cross where he received a Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship. He graduated from the College of the Holy Cross with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and a Concentration in African Studies. Mr. Nunes earned his Juris Doctorate at Seton Hall University School of Law and then served as a Law Clerk to the Honorable Rudolph N. Hawkins, P.J.S.C.