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What Are the Differences Between Burglary and Robbery in New Jersey?

It is important to recognize the key differences between burglary and robbery in New Jersey. Our legal team is committed to ensuring that you and your future are protected. If you were charged, our Bergen County criminal defense attorney is on your side.

What is burglary in New Jersey?

In the state of New Jersey, burglary is defined as when an individual enters a structure or research facility without permission, with the intent to commit a crime inside that structure.

It is important to recognize that the term “structure” is ambiguous. It can refer to any room, building, ship, vehicle, airplane, or any place adapted either for sleeping or business.

Additionally, with a burglary charge, it can be elevated to an aggravated burglary charge. Aggravated burglary is when the offender inflicts, threatens, or attempts to inflict bodily injury on another individual while also committing burglary. Aggravated burglary also involves burglars who are armed with, or appear to be armed with a deadly weapon or explosive. In most cases, this charge has more severe penalties than burglary.

The consequences of burglary are severe and likely include the following:

  • Burglary: This charge is usually characterized as a crime of the third degree and an individual can face up to 5 years in prison, in addition to a potential $15,000 fine.
  • Aggravated burglary: This is a crime of the second degree, and a person may face up to 10 years in prison and up to $150,000 in fines.

What is robbery in New Jersey?

Robbery is an aggravated theft crime. According to New Jersey law, simple theft turns into a robbery in the event that any of the following events happen while the crime is being committed:

  • Inflicting bodily injury or other use of force during the theft
  • Threatening or otherwise putting the victim in immediate fear of bodily injury
  • Committing or threatening to commit a crime of the first or second degree during the course of a theft, for example, inflicting serious bodily injury or death, or using or threatening to use a deadly weapon (armed robbery)

If you were charged with robbery in New Jersey, you will likely be faced with the following penalties:

  • Second-degree robbery: Five to 10 years in prison as well as a fine of up to $150,000.
  • First-degree robbery: 10 to 20 years in prison as well as a fine of up to $200,000.

You will also want to take note of the No Early Release Act. Essentially, this requires the offender to serve 85% of their sentence before becoming qualified for parole. Do not wait to reach out to our firm today if you were charged with burglary or robbery. Our skilled Bergen County theft attorney is on your side.


Kevin T. Conway is an experienced Bergen County criminal attorney handling DUI, DWI, traffic violations, violent crimes, sex crimes, illegal gun possession, shoplifting, and juvenile crimes. Attorney Conway is also experienced in commercial law matters, zoning law, and estate planning. If you need an aggressive criminal lawyer, contact The Law Office of Kevin T. Conway for a free consultation.

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