Morristown Burglary Lawyers
Theft Defense Attorneys Located in Morris County, New Jersey
A criminal conviction for burglary can be devastating. Regardless of the value of the property taken, a conviction for burglary can result in serious jail time. A conviction for burglary will also cause you to have a permanent criminal record. Depending on the circumstances of the offense, burglary can be considered both a theft crime and a violent crime. This means that a burglary conviction carries a stigma that can ruin your reputation and destroy your future. Do not let that happen. In order to avoid the most serious consequences of a burglary conviction, it is imperative that you contact an experienced burglary defense lawyer immediately.
The Tormey Law Firm is an experienced team of criminal defense lawyers who represent clients charged with burglary and other theft crimes in Morristown, Parsippany, Dover, Denville, Roxbury, and throughout Morris County. Our managing partner, Travis J. Tormey, has handled thousands of cases in Municipal and Superior Courts across the state of New Jersey. At The Tormey Law Firm, we are dedicated to defending your rights and keeping you out of jail. Give us a call anytime at 866-949-6948, or use the online contact form to schedule a no-cost appointment at our centrally-located offices in Morristown. A member of our criminal defense team will be happy to answer any questions you have and provide you with an honest assessment of your case. This consultation about your case will be free, so call today.
New Jersey Burglary Charges: N.J.S.A. 2C:18-2
The New Jersey Criminal Code addresses charges for burglary under section N.J.S.A. 2C:18-2, which provides:
a. Burglary defined. A person is guilty of burglary if, with purpose to commit an offense therein or thereon he:
(1) Enters a research facility, structure, or a separately secured or occupied portion thereof unless the structure was at the time open to the public or the actor is licensed or privileged to enter;
(2) Surreptitiously remains in a research facility, structure, or a separately secured or occupied portion thereof knowing that he is not licensed or privileged to do so; or
(3) Trespasses in or upon utility company property where public notice prohibiting trespass is given by conspicuous posting, or fencing or other enclosure manifestly designed to exclude intruders.
b. Grading. Burglary is a crime of the second degree if in the course of committing the offense, the actor:
(1) Purposely, knowingly or recklessly inflicts, attempts to inflict or threatens to inflict bodily injury on anyone; or
(2) Is armed with or displays what appear to be explosives or a deadly weapon.
Otherwise burglary is a crime of the third degree. An act shall be deemed “in the course of committing” an offense if it occurs in an attempt to commit an offense or in immediate flight after the attempt or commission.
Consequences of a Burglary Conviction in New Jersey
Burglary is third degree indictable offense, which is a felony in New Jersey. Burglary cases are heard before a Superior Court judge in the county in which the alleged crime occurred. Under NJ law, a person commits burglary simply by entering a structure without permission and with the purpose of committing a crime. Prosecutors interpret the statute broadly, meaning a “structure” can mean practically anything for the purposes of a burglary charge. It can mean any building, room, ship, vessel, car, vehicle, airplane, or anyplace in which someone could stay overnight or conduct business.
The crime of burglary in New Jersey is typically classified as a third degree felony. Under NJ law, you can be sentenced to three (3) to five (5) years in NJ State Prison and fined as much as $15,000. In certain instances, the crime can be upgraded to a second degree felony. A prosecutor may charge you with second degree burglary if you purposefully, knowingly, or recklessly attempted to inflict or threatened to inflict bodily injury on anyone. You may also be charged with second degree burglary if you were armed with or displayed a deadly weapon during the alleged offense. The elevation in degree is a common occurrence because any threat of harm to an occupant of the building will be enough for a prosecutor to upgrade the charge. It is crucial that you have an experienced burglary defense lawyer on your side because a conviction for second degree burglary can result in a sentence of 10 years in NJ State Prison and a $150,000 fine.
If you have no prior criminal history, you may be eligible for admission into a diversionary program for first time offenders known as Pre-Trial Intervention. You will be placed on a period of probation, and, if the probation is successfully, completed, the charges against you will be dismissed. In addition, if the burglary was driven by an addiction to drugs, you may also be eligible to apply for the Morris County Drug Court program. This allows defendants who would otherwise be headed to prison to remain free while they work and attend meetings for their drug addiction.
Contact a Dover Burglary Lawyer Near Me for a Free Consultation
The Tormey Law Firm’s experienced team of burglary defense lawyers has the skills and knowledge to help you today. We know how to fight burglary charges. Our top priority is always to get the charges against you dismissed. If the prosecutor has a particularly strong case, we may still be able to get the charges downgraded so that you can avoid going to jail and hopefully keep your permanent record clean of a theft crime conviction.
A member of our criminal defense team will be happy to answer any questions you have and provide you with an honest assessment of your case. If you or someone you love has been charged with burglary in Rockaway, Madison, Mount Olive, Jefferson, East Hanover, or elsewhere in Morris County, contact the Tormey Law Firm anytime at 866-949-6948, or use our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.