Burglary Attorney in Los Angeles
Burglary occurs when someone enters a property without permission with the intent to commit a crime. This usually refers to the commission of theft, although strictly speaking the definition covers a range of crimes. Depending on the circumstances of the specific crime, burglary can carry penalties which include prison time. As burglary can be charged as a
felony, this can lay one open to the severe penalties of California's "three strikes law." Dealing in the realm of these kinds of consequences, it quickly becomes clear why it is vital to have a criminal defense lawyer fighting on your side.
What is burglary? What are the penalties?
In the state of California, burglary is often referred to what is known as "breaking and entering." This is because under California Penal Code §459, the crime of burglary is defined as the entering into any home (no matter whether it is a room, apartment or stable) with the intentions of committing grand, theft, petty theft or any form of a felony offense. Should the dwelling or building be inhabited at the time of the burglary, it will be considered a first degree felony, otherwise, it is a felony of the second degree. Penalties for burglary will include the following:
- First Degree: Two, four or six years if imprisonment in state prison
- Second Degree: Imprisonment in county jail for no more than a year
As defined under §462, there are very rare circumstances where a defendant for burglary will be granted probation. Should a judge determine that the case is rare and that the interests of the court would be better served through the granting of probation, they must specify their reasoning.
Burglary in State of Emergency
In some cases, the state may deem a county to be in a "state of emergency." This will typically occur in cases where a natural disaster has occurred, such as an earthquake, fire, flood or a riot. Should this occur, it is important to realize that criminal law will be treated differently.
For example, burglary will be tried differently should it be tried during a county declared to be in a state of emergency. Should the circumstances of the emergency, such as lowered police presence or evacuated homes, be used in the commission of the burglary, it will be considered looting and will be punishable by up to a year of imprisonment in a county jail.
Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyer for Theft Charges
At Martinian & Associates, we pride ourselves on our dedicated service to our clients. We understand that facing legal action is an incredibly daunting experience. It is important to us to ensure your questions are answered and you are guided through this process with certainty and understanding. You can rest assured that we are working with a dismissal of charges or an acquittal as our goal.
As burglary is a crime that deals with intent, it can be incredibly difficult to prove. The burden of proof lies with the prosecution and we will demand the standard of proof beyond reasonable doubt is upheld. Any question of one's intent, therefore, demands one be considered innocent. For this reason, it is especially important in burglary cases that you amend your right to remain silent upon arrest. Contact our firm immediately and don't make any statements without your attorney present.