Burglary, which is often referred to as breaking and entering, is a serious crime in the state of New Jersey. The penalties imposed on defendants who are convicted of burglary are severe. Your future is at stake, which is why you need to seek legal representation from a skilled burglary attorney at The Hernandez Law Firm as soon as possible. Let our dedicated team of criminal defense lawyers aggressively protect your rights and fight for your freedom.
What Are the Key Elements of Burglary in New Jersey?
The term burglary is often used interchangeably with theft and robbery, but in New Jersey, these are three distinct crimes. If you are facing burglary charges, it’s important to understand what crime you are being accused of committing.
Burglary occurs when you illegally enter, trespass on, or remain in a home, business, vehicle, or other structure with the intent to commit a crime once inside. Thus, the key elements that the state needs to prove in order to convict someone of burglary are:
- The defendant entered, remained in, or trespassed on a property.
- The defendant did not have the legal right to be on the property at the time the crime was committed.
- The defendant intended on committing a crime once he gained access to the property.
Many people associate burglary with theft. For example, someone may illegally enter a home with the intent to steal from the homeowners. This is a common type of burglary, but it’s not the only way that this crime can be committed. An offender may have the intent to commit any crime once inside the home, business, vehicle, or other structure, so theft does not necessarily need to be involved in a burglary crime.
It’s important to note that you do not need to actually commit a crime inside the home, business, vehicle, or other structure in order to face burglary charges. You can face burglary charges for simply having the intent to commit a crime regardless of whether or not you actually went through with it once inside.
Is Burglary A Felony or Misdemeanor in New Jersey?
Most states classify crimes as either misdemeanors or felonies, but New Jersey uses a different classification system. In this state, misdemeanor crimes are known as disorderly persons offenses and felony crimes are known as indictable crimes.
Burglary is an indictable crime in New Jersey. Most burglary offenses are third-degree indictable crimes. However, burglary is charged as a second-degree indictable crime if the offender is armed or appears to be armed with a deadly weapon or explosives at the time the crime was committed. It is also charged as a second-degree crime if the offender inflicts, attempts to inflicts, or threatens to inflict harm on anyone when committing the crime.
What Are the Penalties For A Burglary Conviction in New Jersey?
The penalties for a burglary conviction will vary depending on a number of factors, including whether it is charged as a second- or third-degree indictable crime.
A conviction for third-degree burglary can lead to between 3 to 5 years in prison in addition to up to $15,000 in fines. If you are convicted of second-degree burglary, the penalties may include substantial fines plus between 5 to 10 years in prison.
How Can A Criminal Defense Lawyer Fight Burglary Charges?
The criminal defense attorneys at The Hernandez Law Firm are passionate about seeking justice on behalf of defendants accused of burglary. We will carefully review the details of your charges to look for holes in the prosecution’s case and determine the best way to secure your freedom. If the prosecution’s case is weak, we may be able to get your charges dismissed. Even if the prosecution has a strong case against you, we can aggressively negotiate to reduce your charges.
Don’t let a burglary conviction completely disrupt your life. Contact the trusted attorneys at The Hernandez Law Firm to learn how we can help you beat these charges.
Call Now to Schedule Your Free Consultation With Our New Jersey Burglary Attorneys
Are you facing burglary charges? If so, seek legal representation from the experienced burglary attorneys at The Hernandez Law Firm as soon as possible. Our criminal defense attorneys have helped countless clients beat their criminal charges and protect their freedom. Let us work tirelessly to reach the best possible outcome in your case. To schedule a free consultation, call our law firm at 732-286-2700 or fill out the form on our website today.