Parsippany Arson Defense Attorneys

Criminal Lawyers with Offices in Morris County, New Jersey

Arrested Charged with Arson Morris County Help

According to New Jersey law, arson is the malicious burning of the dwelling place of another. Depending on the circumstances, arson can be classified as either a first, second, or third degree offense. If you are convicted of arson in NJ, you could be looking at up to 15 years in New Jersey State Prison, in addition to other penalties discussed below.

The criminal defense lawyers at our law firm have successfully defended thousands of clients charged with serious criminal offenses, including arson, trespassing, and criminal mischief throughout New Jersey, including in Mount Olive, Madison, Roxbury, Dover, and Morristown. Our founding partner, Travis J. Tormey, is an experienced criminal defense attorney who has been cited by AOL News, the Asbury Park Press, and the Morris County Daily Record in New Jersey with regard to criminal cases, including shoplifting, disorderly conduct, and sex crimes. Mr. Tormey’s extensive experience in the courtroom has allowed him to develop advanced defense strategies that he can use to help you. As you can see, Mr. Tormey’s results speak for themselves.

Individuals facing the threat of investigation or imminent criminal charges should contact us today for a free consultation with our respected New Jersey criminal defense firm. One of our attorneys will be happy to speak to you and explore the best strategies for your case. Contact our Morristown office today at 866-949-6948.

Arson and Aggravated Arson: N.J.S.A. 2C:17-1

In New Jersey, arson and aggravated arson are criminalized under N.J.S.A. 2C:17-1, which provides, in pertinent part:

a. A person is guilty of aggravated arson if he starts a fire or causes an explosion, whether on his own property or another’s:

(1) Thereby purposely or knowingly placing a person in danger of death or bodily injury; or

(2) With the purpose of destroying a building or structure; or

(3) With the purpose of collecting insurance for the damage to such property; or

(4) With the purpose of exempting the structure from zoning or building laws; or

(5) With the purpose of destroying or damaging any forest.

b. Arson. A person is guilty of arson if he purposely starts a fire or causes an explosion:

(1) Thereby recklessly placing another person in danger of death or bodily injury; or

(2) Thereby recklessly placing a building or structure in danger of damage; or

(3) With the purpose of collecting insurance for the damage to such property; or

(4) With the purpose of exempting the structure from zoning or building laws; or

(5) Thereby recklessly placing a forest in danger of damage or destruction.

c. Failure to control or report dangerous fire. A person who knows that a fire is endangering life or a substantial amount of property and either fails to take reasonable measures to put out the fire or to give prompt fire alarm, commits a crime if:

(1) He knows that he is under an official or other legal duty to prevent or combat the fire; or

(2) The fire was started, albeit lawfully, by him or with his assent.

d. Any person who pays or accepts money for the purpose of starting a fire commits a crime.

NJ Penalties for Arson and Aggravated Arson

The penalties for arson vary, depending on the circumstances of the fire.

  • First Degree Arson: First degree arson applies to a person who is hired to start a fire. This charge is punishable by 15 years in New Jersey State Prison, a term of incarceration which must be served in its entirety without the possibility of parole.
  • Second Degree Arson (Aggravated Arson): Aggravated arson is a second degree charge which applies when a person purposefully or knowingly starts a fire that puts other people in danger of death or bodily injury. This charge is punishable by five (5) to 10 years in NJ State Prison. Additionally, aggravated arson is an enumerated crime under the No Early Release Act (NERA). If the NERA applies to your conviction, you MUST serve no less than 85% of your sentence before becoming eligible for parole.
  • Third Degree Arson: Arson is typically charged a third degree felony offense. This is the charge when a person starts a fire that recklessly endangers another person or a building. If a person is convicted of third degree arson, he or she faces a term of imprisonment of between three (3) and five (5) years in NJ State Prison.

Am I going to jail on an arson charge for a first time offense?

It depends. If you have a first or second degree arson charge, it is presumed that you will be sentenced to prison. However, on a third degree arson charge, it is presumed that you will be sentenced to probation and not prison.

Can I get PTI on an arson charge?

Potentially in certain cases. On a first degree case it is very unlikely that you will be eligible or the prosecutor will even let you apply to PTI as the charge is too serious. However, on a 2nd degree arson or 3rd degree arson, you may be able to apply to PTI and avoid a felony charge on your record and prison time.

Contact a Roxbury Arson Lawyer to Discuss Your Case

If you’ve been charged with arson in New Jersey, it is imperative that you speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney. The skilled attorneys at our law firm have advanced defense strategies that they can use to help you beat an arson charge. If you have no prior record, there is a presumption of non-incarceration on third degree crimes. Additionally, we might be able to get you admitted into a diversionary program such as conditional discharge or Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI).

We’ve got the experience needed to fight your arson charge and potentially get your case dismissed. Call us today toll-free at 866-949-6948 for a free consultation. We will answer any questions you have, and we will help you formulate a strategy to keep you out of jail.

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Experience You Can Trust

With unmatched knowledge and experience in the practice of law, the seasoned attorneys at The Tormey Law Firm are committed to serving their clients and tenaciously confronting the allegations against them.

We will examine every facet of your case in order to defend your constitutional rights and reputation.

With a dedicated legal advocate to assist you, our attorneys will ensure that you are never forced to navigate the complex legal process on your own.

The Tormey Law Firm

Morristown Location

55 Madison Avenue, Suite 400, Morristown, NJ 07960

(908) 336-5008 Directions

Areas we serve

All of Morris County including Boonton, Boonton Township, Butler, Chatham Borough, Chatham Township, Chester Borough, Chester Township, Denville Township, Dover, East Hanover Township, Florham Park, Hanover Township, Harding Township, Jefferson Township, Kinnelon, Lincoln Park, Long Hill Township, Madison, Mendham Borough, Mendham Township, Mine Hill Township, Mount Arlington, Montville, Morris Plains, Morris Township, Morristown, Mount Olive Township, Mountain Lakes, Netcong, Parsippany-Troy Hills Township, Pequannock Township, Randolph, Riverdale, Rockaway Borough, Rockaway Township, Roxbury Township, Victory Gardens, Washington Township, and Wharton.