“Burglary charges can potentially be defeated, like any other case. Specific details within your incident will determine the strategy we can use to disprove the State’s case.”
This burglary success story is somewhat atypical, considering that the accused truly had no intention of stealing anything from the plaintiff. However, there are ways to fight any charge in New Jersey, and your best bet is to call my office so that we can figure out potential loopholes that exist within your case.
I recently represented a client in East Hanover Municipal Court who was originally charged with burglary, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:18-2, a crime of the third degree, and theft, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-7A, a crime of the fourth degree. These are indictable criminal offenses which must be handled at the Morris County Superior Court in Morristown, New Jersey.
The circumstances surrounding the alleged offense were as follows. The defendant was a young man from Pennsylvania with no prior criminal record who was visiting New Jersey with a friend and staying at the Ramada Inn in East Hanover. An incident occurred between the defendant and his friend and another group of young men wherein the defendant’s friend was assaulted and punched in the jaw by members of the other group.
The defendant, who was sleeping at the time, was then summoned by his friend to respond and these two individuals went to the other guys room and flipped over their mattresses, etc. in response to the assault. The defendant and his friend were then arrested for burglary and theft for allegedly stealing a pair of blue jeans from the hotel room.
As you can see, this was not a strong burglary case for the State. To prove a burglary, the State must prove unlawful entry AND that the defendant’s entered with the intent to commit a crime therein. In this case, the defendant and his friend entered the room looking for the other guys and, when they weren’t present, responded by messing up their hotel room. Based on these circumstances, I was successful in convincing the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office that these charges should be remanded to Municipal Court. As a result, the case was sent back to East Hanover Municipal Court for disposition.
In East Hanover Municipal Court the defendant was still facing disorderly persons offenses which would result in a criminal record if convicted. However, I was again successful in convincing the East Hanover Municipal Prosecutor to amend the disorderly persons charges to a municipal ordinance violation for disturbing the peace which results in a fine and no criminal record. This was the proper result in this case and the defendant and his family were extremely grateful that he was able to avoid a criminal record and jail in this case.