How does spending up to 20 years in prison sound? Well, if you have been charged with burglary in Georgia, this is what you could be facing without a qualified burglary defense lawyer to represent you. Burglary is a serious criminal offense and you should take your charge very seriously. Even if it is your first offense, you can still receive at least one year in prison.
Burglary Is Not Theft
Many people think that burglary refers to someone taking something that is not theirs. However, the act of taking another’s property is considered theft, not burglary. The point at which it’s considered burglary is when a person enters another person’s dwelling without their permission. To be considered burglary the intent to steal something or to commit a felony must be in the person’s mind, otherwise the crime would be considered criminal trespassing.
Movies and TV shows often depict a burglar breaking into someone’s home, but a burglary can occur in any type of building, structure or room. Or perhaps you enter a friend’s home while no one is there. You don’t intend to steal anything, but when you arrive and no one is home you find money on a drawer and can’t resist taking it. If the money had been left alone, you only would have been charged with criminal trespassing. However, now that theft has occurred, you can now be charged with theft and burglary because you entered the home without permission.
Burglary is a felony charge and theft is either a misdemeanor or felony depending on what has been stolen. The crime of burglary can also be charged depending on the facts surrounding your case. For example, a nasty divorce has caused your husband to get a restraining order against you. In an effort to retrieve your things from the home you used to share, you go to the home. Since you have violated your restraining order, you could be charged with aggravated stalking, which is a felony. If you are charged with a felony and you have entered a person’s home without their permission, you can now be charged with burglary, which is another felony.
Burglary is a serious crime and your Georgia burglary defense attorney can help defend you.