What is Considered Breaking and Entering? Breaking and entering is the act of entering another person’s home or commercial space with the intent of committing a crime, including theft or felony. Under California law, breaking and entering is technically charged as burglary, trespassing, or other charges that fit the situation. Here’s what you need to know about breaking and entering charges or stealing charges in California.
Examples of Breaking and Entering There are many situations that could result in burglary charges in California, including:
- Breaking into a house to steal a TV, computer, jewelry, etc.
- Walking into an office to commit a crime
- Committing robbery of a bank
- Breaking a car window to steal a wallet, purse, or gym bag
- Walking into an unlocked house and taking something
Charges for Breaking and Entering A person is charged with breaking and entering in California if the prosecution can prove that they committed both of the following acts:
Even if the person did not actually commit the crime, they can still be charged with burglary if they entered a dwelling or locked car with the intent of committing the crime. “Entering” a building means the person has crossed the outer boundary of a building, either with their body or by using a tool to reach inside.
- Went into a house, office, building, room inside a building, locked vehicle, or other type of residence and office space
- Planned to commit a theft or felony while on the premises
Possible Defenses The right defense attorney could raise legal defense against burglary charges. To do so, they would have to prove that the person:
- Was the victim of mistaken identity
- Never crossed the outer boundary of the dwelling or office
- Did not intend to commit a theft or felony before entering the residence, building, or locked vehicle
- Was forced or threatened by someone to break into the building or commit the crime
Possible Sentences A person convicted of burglary in California may face first-degree or second-degree burglary sentences, which include:
- First Degree Sentence
- 2, 4, or 6 years in state prison
- Strike on the record (Three felony strikes results in a life sentence)
- Second Degree Sentence:
- 16 months, 2 years, or 3 years in state prison
- Fine of $1,000
Contact Us Today Do you or someone you know need help fighting against a breaking and entering charge? If so, contact us at the Law Office of Bradley Corbett. We’re eager to help you get the best outcome for your situation. Learn more about how we can help you today.
Bradley Corbett is a criminal defense attorney in San Diego. He graduated from Brigham Young University in Provo Utah in 2004. Later he enrolled at Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego where he participated in a prestigious internship program with the Los Angeles County Public Defender. Since then he has handled over 2,000 cases.