Virginia takes burglary offenses very seriously. If you were charged, you will need to retain the services of a skilled Chesapeake criminal defense lawyer today.
How does Virginia define burglary?
According to Virginia law, burglary is defined as “breaking and entering the house of another at night with the intent to commit a felony or larceny within.”
If you were armed at the time of your burglary offense, you will be charged with a Class 2 felony, and you will face a prison sentence of 20 years to life, with additional fines as high as $100,000. If you were not armed, you will be charged with a Class 3 felony, resulting in 5 to 20 years in prison.
To learn more, reach out to our skilled Virginia criminal defense attorneys.
What is statutory burglary in Virginia?
Statutory burglary can be committed in three different ways. They include the following:
- Breaking and entering into a dwelling with the intent to commit murder, rape, robbery, or arson is a Class 3 or Class 2 felony, depending on whether the person had a deadly weapon under Virginia Code Section 18.2-90. The punishment can be 5 to 20 years in prison and a $100,000 fine.
- Breaking and entering into a dwelling with the intent to commit larceny, assault, and battery, or arson is statutory burglary with a punishment of up to 20 years in prison or up to 12 months in jail and/or a $2,500 fine under Virginia Code Section 18.2-91.
- Breaking and entering into a dwelling with the intent to commit a misdemeanor other than trespass or assault and battery is another statutory burglary crime under Virginia Code Section 18.2-92. The sentence can include one to five years in prison, a jail sentence of up to 12 months, or a fine of up to $2,500.
What are burglary defenses?
There are several defenses to a burglary charge in Virginia. With the help of a skilled Chesapeake criminal defense lawyer, you will be able to consider all possible defenses for your case. Some examples of burglary defenses that our attorneys can consider are whether:
- You owned the property that you were trying to take back
- The property was not actually a dwelling (if it is relevant to the charges against you)
- You planned to commit a crime or lacked intent to commit a crime
- You had a legal right to be in the dwelling, building, or space
- You were intoxicated at the time of the alleged crime
- There was a mistake of fact or mistake in identity that resulted in charges being brought against you
Our firm can also look into whether or not your legal rights were violated during a search, interrogation, arrest, or detainment after an arrest and whether the prosecution has enough evidence to prove its case. Reach out to our firm today to get started.
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Patzig Law is a dedicated Virginia law firm handling a variety of legal matters throughout the Commonwealth. We have significant experience in divorce, alimony, equitable distribution, child custody, and support. If you need an aggressive criminal defense attorney, our lawyers will fight to protect your rights in cases including DUIs, drug crimes, weapons offenses, fraud, theft, and much more. If you need a Chesapeake divorce lawyer to handle any of your family law matters, contact Patzig Law today.