Burglary Attorney in Philadelphia
Burglary is a felony of the first degree and can carry a jail sentence of up to 20 years! If you have been charged with burglary, excellent counsel is a must, and you must act quickly to preserve your freedom.
Burglary in Philadelphia is defined not as breaking a property but as simply entering a structure intending to commit a crime. This lower standard means you will need an attorney who will fight that much harder for you.
The Law Offices of Greg Prosmushkin, P.C. is ready to fight for you; call today to schedule a free consultation with one of our Philadelphia Criminal Attorneys.
Burglary in Pennsylvania
In Pennsylvania, burglary neither requires breaking a building nor committing a crime; your presence and intent are sufficient. Therefore, if you think you will beat the charges merely because you did not steal or commit another crime, you are incorrect. If officers believe that you entered a building intending to commit a crime and testify as such, you could be in severe trouble.
The degree of the felony depends entirely upon two factors: (1) whether the building was equipped as a place for people to stay overnight, and (2) whether there was, in fact, anyone else in the building. If both of these factors can be answered in the negative, then the charges should be for a felony in the second degree.
While this is not a defense to the crime, these factors are important for your attorney to review. The difference between possible penalties for a first-degree felony and a second-degree felony is significant.
Additionally, if the issue of intent is unclear, your attorney could potentially plead you down to a lesser offense, such as trespassing. Be sure to discuss the circumstances of entering the structure and your arrest in full detail with your lawyer. The more information you provide, the better your chances of developing a strong defense.
Possible Defenses to Burglary Include:
- The building or structure was abandoned, or
- The premises are open to the public, or
- The defendant is permitted to enter the structure.
You and your lawyer must discuss the abovementioned events because your attorney may need to conduct their investigation to best defend you. Police reports must be reviewed, evidence discredited, and a determination of which defenses apply to your case must be made, all as quickly as possible.
Conspiracy to Commit Burglary in Pennsylvania
In Pennsylvania, it is a crime for two or more people to:
- agree on a plan to commit a burglary, or
- attempt a burglary, or
- solicit another to participate in a burglary attempt.
This means your mere association with the crime constitutes a criminal offense. So even if you do not participate in the actual crime, if you were the mastermind behind the operation, or even simply the lookout, you may be charged with conspiracy to commit burglary. If charged with this crime, you will face consequences on par with those convicted of the burglary.
The only way to separate yourself from this crime once engaged in the conspiracy is to actively attempt to thwart it and disassociate yourself from it. You should discuss the precise legalities with an attorney if you find yourself concerned you may be involved in a conspiracy of any kind. You must appropriately withdraw and alert the authorities to thwart the crime’s commission.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer for Burglary Case?
You face years in prison if you have been charged with burglary or conspiracy to commit a burglary. You must do everything you can to fight these challenges to keep from ending up behind bars. Whether you and your attorney believe you can beat the charges or plea them down to a less serious offense, you must act now. Contact Greg Prosmushkin today to schedule your free consultation.