Burglary Lawyer in Richmond
Our Criminal Defense Attorneys Can Help
Burglary is basically defined as the unlawful entering of a dwelling with
the intention of committing a crime,
usually theft. In extreme cases, however, burglary can be committed with the intent
to cause serious bodily harm such as
rape or murder. This is a serious crime that is spelled out under the Code
of Virginia Sections 18.2-89-92 and 18.2-10.
Originally, burglary was only charged if the incident occurred at night.
Now most states do not consider the time of day relevant. The entry can
occur through force "breaking" or by merely entering through
an unlocked door or open window. Burglary is a serious offense. Speak with our
Richmond criminal defense attorneys at Carlson & Collier if you have been charged.
Burglary is a felony — and the penalties are serious.
Burglary is a
felony. If, however, someone "breaks" into a dwelling with the sole
intent to sleep there or to get out of the cold, the person may be convicted
with the lesser crime of unlawful entry. Unlawful entry is a misdemeanor.
If the accused enters the house unlawfully with the intent of committing
a heinous crime such as murder, he or she may be charged with a Class
2 felony. This is the most serious of the burglary charges. If the person was
armed with a deadly weapon at the time of entry, this now becomes armed burglary.
How will the court determine the charges?
In order for the judge or jury to determine the nature of the offense the
prosecution will need to provide evidence to prove the accused's intent
at the time of the
Prosecution will have to answer multiple questions regarding the accused,
including but not limited to:
- Were stolen items from the crime scene found in the accused individual's
- Did they arrive armed?
- Had threats been previously made?
- Was there forced entry?
Three Forms of Statutory Burglary in the Commonwealth of Virginia
The state of Virginia has three forms of statutory burglary:
- First, there is the unlawful entering of a dwelling with the intent to
commit murder, rape, robbery, or arson which is a Class 2 felony and punishable
by imprisonment for life or for any term not less than 20 years and /
or a fine up to $100,000. Also, an armed burglary would be classified
as the same.
- Second, entering a dwelling with intent to commit larceny, assault and
battery, or a felony other than murder, rape, robbery, or arson which
is a Class 3 felony and is punishable by a term of imprisonment not less
than 5 years nor more than 20 and a fine not more than $100,000.
- Third, breaking and entering a dwelling with the intent to commit a misdemeanor
that is not assault and battery or trespass is considered a Class 6 felony
and is punishable by not less than 1 or more than 5 years' incarceration.
At the discretion of the court, however, confinement may be less than
1 year and / or $2,500.
Defending Your Future — Help from Our Richmond Criminal Defense Lawyers
To clarify several terms used; "Breaking" is defined as any forced
entry. "Entering" is when any part of the body enters the premises.
And a "dwelling" is any place of human habitation. If you have
any questions, schedule a
free phone consultation with our team today.
Call our skilled Richmond criminal defense lawyers at Carlson & Collier!