The Asbury Park Press reported today on three separate robbery cases which arose in recent days in Monmouth County.  One of the incidents involved an assault turned robbery in Long Branch. There was no weapon involved. In another case in Neptune, the robbery involved a holdup by a suspect armed with a handgun. In the third theft, a shoplifting turned into a robbery in Holmdel New Jersey.

The three cases are interesting as they each illustrate a different pedigree of robbery. In this regard, a theft turns into a robbery where force is used to escape. This is commonly referred to as a strong arm robbery.  A strong arm robbery is a Second Degree offense punishable by 5 to 10 years in prison. Where a weapon is involved, the robbery is termed an armed robbery. Armed robbery is a First Degree charge in New Jersey and carries 10 to 20 years of imprisonment. It is important to keep in mind that an armed robbery need not involve a traditional weapon like a gun, knife or bat; a car can even be a weapon as was the case in the Holmdel robbery wherein the suspect used a car to assault a store employee during escape.

We previously reported on the rise in theft statistics statewide. The report of three robberies yesterday in Monmouth County may be a reflection of this trend.