NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION
Submitted December 4, 2012.
On appeal from Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Mercer County, Indictment No. 06-11-1133.
Joseph E. Krakora, Public Defender, attorney for appellant (David A. Gies, Designated Counsel, on the briefs).
Joseph L. Bocchini, Jr., Mercer County Prosecutor, attorney for respondent (Dorothy Hersh, Assistant Prosecutor, of counsel and on the brief).
Before Judges Waugh and St. John.
Defendant Jeffrey Clegg appeals from an order of the Law Division denying his petition for post-conviction relief (PCR). We affirm.
I. We briefly summarize the relevant procedural history and the facts based on the record before us.
A Mercer County Grand Jury indicted defendant, under Indictment No. 2006-11-1133, with four first-degree counts of robbery, N.J.S.A. 2C:15-1; four third-degree counts of theft by unlawful taking, N.J.S.A. 2C:20-3(a); and four fourth-degree counts of possession of an imitation firearm for an unlawful purpose, N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4(e).
On January 29, 2007, pursuant to a negotiated plea agreement, defendant pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree robbery, N.J.S.A. 2C: 2C:15-1, in exchange for the State's recommendation of concurrent fifteen-year custodial sentences, subject to the No Early Release Act (NERA), N.J.S.A. 2C:43-7.2. As part of his plea colloquy, defendant acknowledged that he read the questions set forth in his plea form, initialed each page, signed the last page, and reviewed the form with his attorney. He admitted that his attorney had explained the form to him and answered his questions to his satisfaction. A five-year period of parole supervision and its consequences was explained in detail to defendant by the trial judge. The trial judge questioned defendant concerning the penal consequences of the State's plea offer as follows:
Sir, do you understand that the State is recommending that at the time of sentencing, I sentence you to a period of 15 years incarceration. Because the No Early Release Act applies to these crimes, you must serve 85 percent of that 15 year period before you would be eligible for parole.
Defendant acknowledged those consequences.
Defendant also gave a factual basis for his pleas of guilty. Defendant described each robbery noting that he wore a mask and gloves, and carried a silver plastic handgun at his side. He admitted that the point of having the weapon was to intimidate the person he was robbing so the victim would give him his money. Defendant stated that, "When I walked in, I ...