Experienced Violent Crimes Lawyers in New Jersey

Violent offenses are typically characterized by conduct intended to threaten or injure a victim. Often, violent crimes are charged as indictable offenses (felonies) in New Jersey. Thus, individuals accused of violent crimes face the harshest criminal penalties if convicted. Aside from prison or jail time and debilitating fines, having a felony conviction on your criminal record can result in the loss of important personal and professional freedoms, such as the right to vote and bear arms, and the inability to find gainful employment or obtain loans for school or housing.

The thought of a “violent crime” may conjure an unrealistic picture of a stranger randomly attacking a victim on the street, or some other random, unprovoked attack. Although these sort of violent crimes do occur, more often they involve simple disputes that got out of hand; for example, when tempers flare during a domestic argument and threats are made in the heat of the moment. Or during a sporting event, fans may be drinking in the parking lot when they become involved in a physical altercation. Another common example is a bar fight. People can be falsely accused of sexual assault or rape by a spurned ex-spouse. Regardless of your situation, you don’t want your future to become clouded by a violent crime conviction. By hiring a respected criminal defense lawyer at the earliest possible opportunity, you can begin fighting back against unfounded or overly harsh charges.


Common Violent Crimes in New Jersey


Although the State of New Jersey abolished the death penalty in 2007, if you are convicted of murder you could face life in prison without parole, fines up to $200,000 and an order to pay restitution to the victim’s family. Homicide is defined as “the killing of one human being by another human being.” Murder is when someone commits homicide with malice and a disregard for human life. The seasoned criminal defense attorneys at Shebell & Shebell understand how high the stakes are in murder cases. With over eight decades of experience successfully defending individuals accused of homicide and murder, we have the resources and skills to protect your rights.

Felony murder

New Jersey has adopted the so-called “felony murder rule,” which allows prosecutors to charge anyone who unintentionally causes a death during the commission of a felony with murder.


There are various types of manslaughter in New Jersey, including voluntary and involuntary manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter and aggravated manslaughter by eluding. Voluntary manslaughter is often referred to as a “crime of passion”—where the killing is not premeditated.   Involuntary manslaughter involves criminal negligence, where the perpetrator lacked the intent to kill someone.

Vehicular manslaughter/vehicular homicide/death by auto

One can be charged with vehicular homicide if they cause the death of a person through the illegal driving of a vehicle. Illegal driving includes gross negligence, drunk driving, reckless driving or even speeding. You can be charged with vehicular manslaughter even if the person who is killed is a family member riding in your own car.

Aggravated manslaughter by eluding

If you kill someone while eluding a police officer, even if their death is unintentional, you can face 10 to 30 years in prison, a $200,000 fine and an order to pay restitution to the victim’s family.

Simple assault/aggravated assault

An assault occurs when a person injures or attempts to injure another person without legal justification. The different levels of assault depend on various factors, including the seriousness of the victim’s injury, whether a weapon was used in commission of the assault, or whether the victim is provided special protection by New Jersey law (e.g., they are a police officer or other public official). The seasoned criminal defense lawyers at Shebell & Shebell have successfully handled countless assault cases throughout the state.

Sexual assault and rape

A sex offense conviction will be placed on your criminal record and can result in your name being placed on New Jersey’s sex offender registry. Being placed on the registry can mean a lifetime of public scrutiny, and the need to deal with complex registration requirements every time you move or get a new job. Even if the encounter involved mutual interest, if one of the parties is under the age of legal consent you can be charged with statutory rape and put on the state sex offender registry.

Domestic assault/domestic violence

You can be charged with domestic assault even if you do not physically harm the victim. Stalking, harassment and making threats are all grounds to be charged with domestic assault in New Jersey. If a spurned lover or ex-spouse makes a false accusation, they cannot later retract their claim once you have been placed under arrest. The court will be left to determine your fate. Penalties for domestic assault can be as serious as ten to 20 years in prison and fines up to $200,000.


Other common violent crimes in New Jersey include:

  • Arson
  • Carjacking
  • Criminal mischief
  • Terroristic threats


Penalties for Violent Crimes in New Jersey

The legal penalties for a violent crime conviction depend on several factors, including a person’s prior criminal history, the nature of the crime committed, the extent of the victim’s injuries and whether a weapon was used during commission of the crime. Individuals convicted of violent crimes can face:

  • Incarceration
  • Probation
  • Fines
  • Community service
  • Court ordered anger management
  • Restitution
  • Legal fees
  • Court ordered counseling

In addition, those convicted of a violent crime will be saddled with a criminal record that in many cases cannot be expunged. New Jersey law prohibits the expungement of many violent crimes.


We Employ Creative, Effective Defense Strategies

Before answering any of the police or prosecutor’s questions, anyone charged with committing a violent crime should speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney. We can help you craft the best defense from the outset. Some defense strategies that we routinely employ include:

  • Challenging the introduction of illegally-obtained evidence
  • Self defense
  • Defense of other people or property
  • Proving consent in the case of alleged sex crimes
  • Proving that allegations against our client are based on false witness testimony
  • Coerced confessions
  • Suggestive photo lineups


Experienced Criminal Defense for Individuals Accused of Violent Crimes

The criminal defense lawyers at Shebell & Shebell have an excellent track record of defending clients in matters involving violent crimes. We represent individuals accused of violent crimes throughout New Jersey, including Monmouth County, Middlesex County, and Ocean County, including Howell, Freehold, Middletown, Shrewsbury, Wall, Union Beach and Neptune. For a free consultation, call us at 866-957-5237 or contact us online today.


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Thomas Shebell was an A M A Z I N G attorney for our personal injury case. He made himself available to all our questions and concerns during the whole process. We were very nervous about it all and he set our fears to rest. You instantly believe in him after your first meeting. He was serious yet empathetic, had superb legal knowledge, and great judgement. His staff is also top notch. Words cannot describe how wonderful a lawyer we believe Thomas Shebell to be and would highly recommend him.
Posted by Michele on December 8

My hero, my attorney who is always there for me!

Tom Shebell has represented me and my family members in several cases. Tom is the most prepared lawyer I have ever seen, and demands respect in and outside of the court room. His staff is amazing and never makes you feel as if you are bothering them. I always feel that I am his most important client, and he always takes my call. If he is busy, I am reassured that he will get right back to me and he does. His knowledge of the law and research on your case is impecable, and will never give up until he gets the results that he feels are the best for you. Although he is the most professional attorney I have ever worked with, he refers you call him Tom (not Mr. Shebell), and I am most comfortable calling him Tommy. His cell phone is on his answering service, to comfort you and assuring you that you can reach him if necessary, no matter what. I will never retain another lawyer, unless it is a case that he cannot handle. That has never happened to me. Unfortunately, Tommy is handling a very emotional case for my family, and whenever we discuss it our meet together he is very comforting to us. For a family man, and extremely busy attorney to handle matters like this, it truly takes a special type of person, and extraordiinary human being. If anyone take my advise, Tom Shebell, III is the only attorney that should be called first, and believe me you will not make another call. As I said in my title, he is my true "hero"!
Posted by Sandi on September 17

I am Grateful I was able to have Thomas Shebell for my Lawyer

Thomas Shebell and his staff were very good to work with. They were always professional, but also very down to earth and real. I always felt that my best interest was their main concern. I was always able to call with questions and concerns and was never made to wait or to feel like I was inconveniencing anyone. I always felt that they knew instantly who I was and what was going on with my case. In the end, Thomas was able to get the best possible settlement for me. I am very grateful to have been treated like my case truly mattered to them.
Posted by Toni on March 28

Ferocious Fighter

Tom Shebell and his firm came highly recommended by several reputable people in the community. I come from a family deeply rooted in law enforcement, so I greatly appreciate that Tom grew up with the law as well, hailing from a family of highly respected attorneys. He easily grasped the complexity of my case and eased my concerns, while ferociously fighting for me. One of the moments that stands out to me the most was when I voiced a concern over possible retaliation and he said, "they're going to have come through me first." I wholeheartedly believed him then and now. There is no one else I'd want in my corner than Tom Shebell.
Posted by on February 23

A League Of His Own

Mere words cannot express my gratitude to Thomas F Shebell III. He took on a case, that other attorneys would shy away from and fought vehemently for my husband, myself and our daughter. His tenacity is only surpassed by his kindness and compassion for his clients well-being. I would recommend Mr. Shebell III to anyone who may need an attorney to guide them through a difficult time and see them through to a successful end. Many thanks again to him and his staff!!