Bucks County Burglary Attorney

The district courts in Bucks County receive roughly 130,000 cases each year of all types. Approximately 10,000 of these are criminal cases. According to FBI data, property crimes across the country fell by about 7.2% from 2017 to 2018. Property offenses include theft of a motor vehicle, larceny, burglary, and others. The majority of these offenses are felonies and those who are convicted may face the following penalties.

Level of Offense

Period of Imprisonment

Maximum Fines

First Degree Felony

Up to 20 years

Up to $25,000

Second Degree Felony

Up to 10 years

Up to $25,000

Third Degree Felony

Up to 7 years

Up to 15,000

Burglary (§ 3502)

A burglary can be a crime committed in several ways and may be either a first or second-degree felony offense. The basis of the offense involves entering a private or public structure that is not open to the public at the time with the intent to commit a crime. The offense may be a second-degree felony if the building or structure does not accommodate overnight occupants and there is no person located inside; otherwise, it is a first-degree offense. Some scenarios may include an unlawful entry with the intent to create bodily injury or to commit theft of a substance listed in the Controlled Substance, Drug Device, and Cosmetic Act.

A burglary charge is typically accompanied by another charge(s) that is associated with the crime. If these other offenses are not first or second-degree felony offenses then the alleged offender will not be charged with multiple crimes. Some of the commonly used defenses may include:

  • The structure that was entered has been abandoned
  • The structure was open for public access
  • That the alleged offender had been “licensed or privileged” to enter the premises

Similar Offenses

A burglary charge does not necessarily involve “breaking and entering” the structure. For example, a door may have been inadvertently left unlocked. Criminal trespass (§ 3503) is a similar offense to burglary. This involves entering a structure that a person is aware that they are not allowed access to. It involves gaining entry to a structure through some “subterfuge” method or covertly remaining within the structure when they are not allowed to. In this case, the offense is a third-degree felony. When an entry is made by using force (“breaking into”) or intimidation it is a second-degree felony offense.

Burglary Rate in Pennsylvania

The state has one of the lowest burglary rates among U.S. states. In 2017, there were approximately 250 offenses per 100,000 people. The three states with the highest rate were New Mexico (858), Mississippi (828), and Louisiana (731). The states with the least number of burglaries were all along the east coast including Virginia (218), New Hampshire (191), and New York (176).

Importance of Retaining Experienced Legal Representation

When facing allegations of criminal offenses of this severity it is critical that seasoned legal counsel is retained. Burglary is an offense that may require that specific evidence or key circumstances be proven to obtain a conviction. Your criminal defense attorney must have a solid understanding of the law to ensure that your rights are protected and the allegations are fully challenged.

Defense Attorney for Burglary Charges in Bucks County

Our Criminal Law Team are attorneys that have spent years representing clients in serious criminal actions. You can rest assured that a comprehensive defense strategy will be employed on your behalf. Contact the office today to discuss the details of your case by calling (888) 535-3686.

Contact Us Today!

The LLF Law Firm Team has decades of experience successfully resolving clients' criminal charges in Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania counties. If you are having any uncertainties about what the future may hold for you or a loved one, contact the LLF Law Firm today! Our Criminal Defense Team will go above and beyond the needs of any client, and will fight until the final bell rings.

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