If you have been charged with and arrested for Burglary in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:18-2, be rest assured that the criminal defense lawyers at Lubiner, Schmidt & Palumbo have a high success rate defending clients all over the State of New Jersey, who have been accused of this very serious indicatable offense. A Conviction for burglary could result in a State prison sentence of up to 10 years, a criminal record that could impact you for a lifetime, and other consequences too numerous to list in a short article.
The important thing to realize is that burglary charges are very defensible. One of the first determinations that will be made by the court in a New Jersey burglary prosecution is whether the defendant will be detained in jail pending the resolution of the case. New Jersey does not have monetary bail under most circumstances. Instead, each defendant is subject to determinations made by the pre trial services unit, the prosecutor’s office and the Court. This is an important step in the beginning stages of a prosecution for burglary and should not be overlooked. I misstep here could result in prolonged detention in jail for the defendant. A detention hearing for a burglary charge is a complex matter and should not be taken lightly.
After that detention determination, a defendant charged with burglary in New Jersey will be channeled into the courts various criminal case processing mechanisms. Some will burglary offenses will be put into a pre-indictment court or pre-disposition court. This is an opportunity for a faster resolution to the case before it is presented to the Grand Jury. The Grand Jury is not a trial. The PDC or PIC court is suppose to result in the best pre-indictment offer that the defendant will get. This is sometimes the case and sometimes not. Turning down the offer and electing to have the matter presented to a grand jury will often result in a escalated plea offer if the matter is indicted. Once again, this is not always the case.
The state can prove a burglary offense by showing basically two things: 1) That you entered a structure, which can be a home, office, or any other place not open to the public and that you had no permission or license to be in, and 2) That you intended to commit an offense while inside. By offense, the statue means criminal or disorderly persons offense. This could be a theft, an assault, criminal mischief, or many other. The important thing to realize is that state must prove that you had the intent to commit an offense before entering. This is not always clear and not always easy to prove. Likewise, it is not always easy to prove that somebody entered a place knowing that they were not supposed to.
Burglary is usually charged as a third-degree offense. A third degree burglary can expose you up to 5 years in state prison and conviction for an offense that will be a nonstarter for most potential employers. In some instances, burglary can be charged as a second-degree offense. Second-degree burglary convictions carry up to 10 years in state prison and a presumption of incarceration, meaning it is likely you will go to jail.
These potential consequences are the reason why you need an experienced and passionate advocate who understands the best course of action. Trial, plea bargain, pre-trial intervention, motion practice, risk assessment, are all part of equation and our years of experience defending thousands of defendants will absolutely work for you.
The New Jersey burglary lawyers at our firm understand that being arrested and charged with a crime of this magnitude will likely be the biggest problem you have ever faced. That is why we are always available to answer all your question. Facing the potential of confinement in jail is a overwhelming experience, but we will ease your fears and you will feel comfortable knowing you made the right choice for your representation.