Being accused of committing burglary is something that you should take very seriously. This is because if you do not take charge of the situation, then you may be sentenced to high fines, imprisonment, and other severe penalties. Continue reading to learn the penalties for burglary in the state of New Jersey and how an experienced Morristown criminal defense lawyer at Graves Andrews, LLC, can help work on your defense.
What is considered burglary in the state of New Jersey?
Put simply, burglary is entering and remaining in someone else’s residence, business, facility, or structure without permission. It is important to note that boats, planes, and motor vehicles fall under the category of “structure.” In addition, the individual must also have the intent to commit a crime before entering the structure. You must note that this is a different criminal offense than robbery, which put simply, is committing the act of theft while using force, violence, or the threat of force or violence.
Importantly, you may be accused of burglary even without breaking and entering. And, you may be accused even without committing theft. To reiterate, the New Jersey court only needs to know the following as true to charge you with burglary:
- You must have entered someone else’s residence, business, facility, or otherwise structure.
- You must have entered such a structure without permission or license to do so.
- You must have entered such a structure with the purpose of committing a crime.
What are the potential penalties for committing a burglary?
In the state of New Jersey, a standard burglary charge is a third-degree indictable offense. Such an offense carries a potential prison sentence of three to five years and/or a potential fine of up to $15,000. This also comes with a permanent criminal record, which carries its own consequences, such as the following:
- You may have difficulties with retaining employment.
- You may have difficulties with renting properties.
- You may have difficulties with securing loans.
- You may have difficulties with maintaining your immigration status.
What are the chances that my burglary charge will be upgraded?
Your burglary charge may potentially be upgraded to aggravated burglary. This is if you imposed or threatened to impose bodily injury on the victim while you were committing the crime. This is a second-degree burglary charge, and carries a potential prison sentence of five to 10 years and a potential fine of up to $150,000.
This is why it is crucial that you seek legal representation from a skilled Morristown criminal defense lawyer. A strong defense can make all the difference in the penalties that will be placed against you. So, pick up the phone and call us today.