In California, burglary does not necessarily involve the theft of another person’s property, but instead entry into someone’s property with the intent commit either petty theft or a felony crime. If you enter a store intending to hurt someone you know works there, you can be charged with burglary. Anyone who is accused of burglary should immediately contact a top San Diego criminal lawyer like Peter M. Liss to help them fight this serious charge.
It is important to realize that burglary charges can still apply even if you never took anything from the property and even if you never actually committed another crime. You also do not need to enter a property illegally for burglary charges to apply. If the prosecution can show that you entered a property with the intent to commit a felony or to commit petty theft, they can charge you with burglary. If, during the act of burglary, you are pursued and use some type of force to help you escape, you can also be charged with robbery.
Burglaries can be charged as either misdemeanors or felonies. If you are charged with a misdemeanor burglary, you can face up to one year in jail. For felonies, the potential sentence increases to up to three years in prison, but if the crime took place in a residential property, you can instead face up to six years in prison. If the burglary was in a residential property and someone was in the home, the crime can even be charged as a violent felony, even if you never assaulted or harmed that person. Residential burglary is also a strike and punishable with a presumptive state prison sentence. San Diego criminal lawyer can be critical to not only fighting the charges, but helping you minimize the charges you are accused of in the first place.
There are many defenses against burglary accusations. In many cases, if you were arrested for trespassing, but the prosecution cannot prove you intended to commit any other crimes, your San Diego criminal attorney can ensure you are not charged with burglary. This is also why you need to speak with a lawyer before you say anything to the police. It is all too easy to accidentally say something to the police that may result in you facing much more serious charges than you would otherwise.
Sometimes small details can mean all the difference in a burglary case. For example, if you are accused of breaking into a car and the door was unlocked, the crime is not burglary, but instead grand or petty theft.
Even if the prosecution has evidence tying you to the scene of a burglary, that is not enough to show you committed the crime. For example, if you have finger prints, tire tracks or shoe prints at the scene of the crime, the prosecution can only show that you were at the scene -San Diego criminal lawyers know that information is not enough to show you actually committed a crime.
If you have been accused of burglary, please call top San Diego defense lawyer Peter M. Liss at (760) 643-4050 or (858) 486-3024 to schedule a free initial consultation.
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