It has been estimated that over 3.7 million cases of burglaries happened between the years 2003-2007, and 28% of these occurrences, a household member was present during the act of burglary. Despite this, however, the act of burglary isn’t necessarily what you think you may know. Here are the things to consider if you’ve had burglary charges against you:
You don’t have to steal anything
Despite what you may or may not know, burglary doesn’t mean that you have to steal another person’s belongings in order for your act to be considered as burglary. The mere fact that you entered a building or structure without a person’s proper permission, whether with the intent to steal or not, a burglary case can be immediately charged against you.
Let’s say, for example, you have a current issue with Bob and you are planning to threaten him with force and therefore, you opt to contact the person inside the house by knocking on the door or ringing the doorbell but no one responds. You notice that the front door is wide open so you step inside to inquire of Bob’s presence in the house by walking around the living room and you leave as you notice that there really is no one inside. Bob then arrives home, checks the CCTV camera and finds you lurking inside the house through the video recording. Though you may not have taken or damaged anything, you already have committed burglary.
The elements of a burglary
Depending on which state you live in the scope of a burglary case can vary, however, it will have its common basic definition based on the Model Penal Code which states that a burglary is:
- An unauthorized breaking and/or entering
- in a building or in a structure
- with a clear intent to commit a crime inside
In order to convict you of a burglary case, your recent action should fall under those basic elements. With a personal attorney to advise you on the legal matters, he should be able to find a flaw in linking your recent action with the burglary case charged against you in order to discredit the case.
On abandoned places
If you entered the vicinity of an abandoned place with the intent of recovering an item that could be of value, the burglary charge against you should be invalid for the mere fact that abandoned buildings do not necessarily qualify as a structure that houses people or animals and sheltering a certain property. You can be charged with trespassing, however, but definitely not burglary itself.
When you are currently facing burglary charges against you, having a personal defense attorney to sort out the legal proceedings can help you clear your mind off the stress that it causes. Whether it is for the purpose of clearing your name or reducing the penalties that you are bound to pay, a criminal defense attorney can definitely iron out your problem.
Leonard Wright understands that as a writer, one must be able to not just to inform readers of their topics, but to do it in an entertaining and interesting fashion. As such, his pieces as a contributor for Wirth Law Office are not just packed with information, but also injected with Leonard’s creative “flair.” If he’s not writing, he loves jogging during his free time.