Authorities in Ocean Township have requested the public’s assistance identifying a suspect who was captured on surveillance video while burglarizing a local residence recently.
The burglary occurred just prior to 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, May 19th, at which time a male suspect, who remains unidentified, knocked on the front door of an Ocean Township home before entering through an unlocked window. Inside the residence, surveillance video documents the man as he appears to steal two laptop computers, wipe the doorknob with his shirt, and flee the scene through the window in which he entered.
Ocean Township police have requested that any and all information regarding the suspect identity and his whereabouts be forwarded to them immediately by phone at 732-531-1800 or 732-531-1428, or via email at CrimeTips@oceantwp.org. The anonymous tip line can also be reached at 732-531-3323.
If a suspect is ultimately identified and arrested, he will likely face charges for burglary and theft. In New Jersey, the distinction between burglary and theft offenses is significant, as each of these crimes involves a different course of conduct and entails specific penalties for those convicted.
It is important to note that in order to be charged with burglary, one does not need to actually commit a theft offense. Under New Jersey law, a defendant can be charged with burglary, a violation of section N.J.S.A. 2C:18-2 of the New Jersey Criminal Code, if he or she enters or remains in a structure or facility with the intention of committing a theft. These charges are typically classified as third degree crimes, which are punishable by a term of incarceration ranging from 3 to 5 years in New Jersey State Prison.
On the other hand, theft charges arise when an individual actually takes, or exercises unlawful control over, the property of another. These offenses are highly variable and the degree of the charges in a given case are determined primarily by the estimated monetary value of the stolen property. In this case, the aggregated value of the laptops would be used to determine the degree of the theft charges.
Ultimately, the law regarding property crimes in New Jersey is such that a single offense can result in multiple charges, each of which entail penalties that may significantly enhance a person’s sentence if they are found guilty.
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