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Death by Auto

Death by Auto or Vehicular Homicide

The Death by Auto or Vessel statute can be found section § 2C:11-5 within the New Jersey Statutes. Death by Auto is criminal homicide and is committed when a person causes the death of another person by driving a vehicle or vessel recklessly. A person acts recklessly with respect to a material element of an offense when he consciously disregards a substantial and unjustifiable risk that the material element exists or will result from his conduct.

Death by Auto is related and should be considered with the crimes of Murder, Aggravated Manslaughter, Reckless Manslaughter.

Murder is the most serious crime in New Jersey’s state law. Manslaughter and Aggravated Manslaughter are similar crimes where a person is killed but the defendant did not the possess the requisite mental state that Murder requires (knowingly or purposely).

The Bianchi Law Group, LLC

The Bianchi Law Group is made up of former trial prosecutors and other “of counsel” attorneys who have handled the investigations and prosecutions of most crimes in New Jersey and will defend you for all federal and state crimes in New Jersey including Death by Auto and Vehicular Homicide.

Former Death by Auto Prosecutors

Founding Partner and Former Morris County Prosecutor Robert A. Bianchi has returned to private practice after running the operations of the entire Morris County Prosecutor’s Office having served as the Morris County Prosecutor for 5 and 1/2 years (2007-2013). Mr. Bianchi was appointed as the Morris County Prosecutor by the Governor of the State of New Jersey and unanimously confirmed by the New Jersey Senate in 2007. While serving as the Morris County Prosecutor, Mr. Bianchi ran the entire office’s operations, inclusive of all of its attorneys, detectives, and support staff with a budget of approximately 11 million dollars. His innovative programs and approach have led to numerous awards from State, Local, Municipal, business, and private entities. Robert Bianchi served on the Executive Board of the County Prosecutors’ Association and was one of the few prosecutors in many years to actually argue cases, motions, and sentences in court, and actually tried a murder case himself, which is extremely rare for a sitting county prosecutor.

Mr. Bianchi was previously a Hudson County Assistant Prosecutor (1989-1996) and thereafter a partner in the law firm Bianchi & Bianchi (1996-2007). Robert was one of the few attorneys in the State who qualified to handle death penalty cases when New Jersey had the death penalty.

Partner David J. Bruno has also returned to private practice after serving as Morris County Assistant Prosecutor (2007-2013). As an assistant prosecutor, Mr. Bruno prosecuted murder, major crimes, white collar, internal affairs, domestic violence, elderly abuse, aggravated manslaughter reckless manslaughter, death by auto and vehicular homicide cases. Additionally, Mr. Bruno handled fraud and Major Crimes investigations and successfully tried a wide variety of trials including securing convictions for several high profile murder cases.

In December 2012, then Prosecutor Bianchi and Assistant Prosecutor Bruno worked together to secure a murder conviction against Jose Feliciano for the violent death of Father Edward Hinds in at St. Patrick’s Church in Chatham, New Jersey. Mr. Feliciano was sentenced to life without parole.

Together, Robert A. Bianchi, David J. Bruno and other “of counsel” attorneys make up an aggressive, ethical, and results-oriented New Jersey Criminal Defense firm who handle all criminal, municipal and DUI/DWI cases in New Jersey including robbery cases.

Certified Criminal Trial Attorneys by the New Jersey Supreme Court

Partners Robert A. Bianchi and David J. Bruno are also both certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a criminal trial Attorneys.

In New Jersey, the New Jersey Supreme Court has a certification committee which classifies certain New Jersey Lawyers as Certified Trial Attorneys. The process requires the prospective attorneys to satisfy a strict criteria including extensive jury trials, a primary focus in criminal law, an application submission, a peer review process, a character and background check and to pass a written examination. Only 250 of over 93,000 lawyers (less than 1%) are designated as certified criminal trial attorneys by the New Jersey Supreme Court. This should be an important factor in finding a New Jersey criminal defense attorney to represent you. Many New Jersey Lawyers describe themselves as trial attorneys but most do not have the New Jersey Court’s distinction as Certified Criminal Trial Attorney.

Robbery Cases in New Jersey

In New Jersey, Robbery is a very serious crime and can be punishable with up to 20 years in New Jersey State Prison. Robbery is a theft from a person, however the theft is elevated to a robbery if, during the course of the robbery, the perpetrator:

  • Inflicts bodily injury or uses force upon another; or
  • Threatens another with or purposely puts him in fear of immediate bodily injury; or
  • Commits or threatens immediately to commit any crime of the first or second degree.

The Penalties for Robbery in New Jersey

Robbery is a crime of the second degree, except that it is a crime of the first degree if in the course of committing the theft the actor attempts to kill anyone, or purposely inflicts or attempts to inflict serious bodily injury, or is armed with, or uses or threatens the immediate use of a deadly weapon.

Crimes in the first degree can be punishable from 10 years to 20 years in New Jersey State Prison. Crimes in the second degree can be punishable from 5 years to 10 years in New Jersey State prison.

The Sentencing Judge may also order fines and restitution as prescribed by 2C:43-3 and for all convictions for Robbery in New Jersey.

2C:15-1- New Jersey’s Robbery Statute

2C:15-1. Robbery

a. Robbery defined. A person is guilty of robbery if, in the course of committing a theft, he:

(1) Inflicts bodily injury or uses force upon another; or

(2) Threatens another with or purposely puts him in fear of immediate bodily injury; or

(3) Commits or threatens immediately to commit any crime of the first or second degree.

An act shall be deemed to be included in the phrase “in the course of committing a theft” if it occurs in an attempt to commit theft or in immediate flight after the attempt or commission.

A Theft is defined in 2C:20-2; A person is guilty of theft if he unlawfully takes, or exercises unlawful control over, movable property of another with purpose to deprive him thereof.

b. Grading. Robbery is a crime of the second degree, except that it is a crime of the first degree if in the course of committing the theft the actor attempts to kill anyone, or purposely inflicts or attempts to inflict serious bodily injury, or is armed with, or uses or threatens the immediate use of a deadly weapon.

Trial Ready New Jersey Criminal Lawyers

Like in all of our cases handled at the Bianchi Law Group, our experienced staff of trial attorneys and “of counsel” attorneys are there to make sure the Government can prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt. If our attorneys cannot resolve the case with a dismissal or a fair and just plea bargain, our lawyers at The Bianchi Law Group will not hesitate to select a jury and take the case to trial. That is what we do and what distinguishes us from other attorneys. We are former prosecutors, trial tested, and certified by the New Jersey Supreme Court as certified criminal trial attorneys… We will not hesitate to go to trial.

Contact Us Today for a Free Initial Consultation

Contact Former Morris County Prosecutor Robert A. Bianchi, Esq. and David J. Bruno, Esq. at The Bianchi Law Group, LLC online or call (862) 210-8570 to schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced New Jersey Defense Attorney.

At The Bianchi Law Group, we will take care to provide you Serious Attorneys for Serious Cases.

New Jersey Supreme Court - Certified Attorney
National Italian American Bar Association
National Italian American Bar Association 2
Avvo Rating - 10.0 Superb - Top Attorney Criminal Defense
New Jersey Association for Justice
New Jersey State Bar Association
Order Sons of Italy in America


4 York Avenue, 2nd Floor
West Caldwell, New Jersey, 07006
Phone: 862-210-8570

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