We at The Moriarty Law Firm have spent decades representing individuals charged with criminal offenses such as marijuana possession and distribution, driving while intoxicated (DWI), robbery, and burglary throughout New Jersey including Monmouth, Union, Middlesex, Somerset, and Ocean County. Contact us today so that we can design a comprehensive strategy to tackle your burglary charges. Contact our office at 732-842-7773 for immediate assistance and to set up your free consultation.
New Jersey Burglary Law: N.J.S.A. 2C:18-2
In New Jersey, burglary is governed by N.J.S.A. 2C:18-2 which states:
§ 2C:18-2. Burglary
a. Burglary defined. A person is guilty of burglary if, with purpose to commit an offense therein 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; or
(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.
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.
Penalties for Burglary in New Jersey
As the above statute enumerates, burglary is typically a third degree crime unless 1) there is an assault or attempted assault involved or 2) the actor is armed with a deadly weapon. In those cases, it becomes a second degree offense.
Understand your burglary charges and the elements the State has to prove: First, the defendant must have entered the structure “with the purpose of committing a crime therein”. This is the key element of the statute: you must have entered the structure or facility with the purpose of committing another crime. Also, notice that breaking into the structure is not a necessary element under the statute. The important issue is whether or not the individual had a license or right to be in the structure or facility. If not, and the other elements of the statute are met, there are grounds for a burglary charge.
We Handle All Criminal Charges
Theft, fraud, shoplifting and other charges can be handled in either Municipal or Superior court. The more severe the criminal charges the more likely they are to be handled in Superior Court, while minor charges are typically resolved in Municipal Court. We have a well deserved reputation for being the best in both arenas.
The severity of your charges is a determination made by the State and is usually based on the value of the stolen property and the amount of force used in taking the property. For example, a robbery involving assault or the threat of force with a deadly weapon will carry much more severe penalties than a burglary or home break-in. Penalties for fraud offenses will often vary depending on the amount of money involved and whether or not there was a criminal conspiracy involved.
Call 732-842-7773 to speak with one of the Moriartys 24 hours a day to discuss your theft or burglary charges. You can also contact our office by e-mail to schedule a free initial consultation.