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California Burglary Lawyer – Penal Code 459 PC

How Can a Burglary Lawyer From My Rights Law Help Me?

Charged with burglary PC 459 in California? A top-rated California theft attorney at My Rights Law will be able to evaluate your burglary case and provide you with meaningful guidance and direction. Our attorneys will aggressively defend you and protect your rights. Call us today at (888) 702-8882 or leave a message on our secure web form to take the first steps towards resolving your legal issue.

What Is Burglary 459 PC?

According to California Penal Code 459 PC, you commit burglary if you willfully or deliberately enter another’s room, house, shop, vessel, store, warehouse, barn, or other building to commit grand larceny, petit larceny, or any felony.

California law states that burglary is a “specific intent crime.” That means that the defendant must have intended to commit the crime of theft or some other felony inside of the location. The prosecutor must establish more than the fact that the person entered the location. The prosecution must demonstrate that there was the requisite intent to commit an offense (e.g., theft of a Rolex) at the “moment” the defendant entered. [1]

Proving Burglary 459 PC

In most circumstances, the ability of the prosecutor to convict the defendant of burglary will depend on whether the specific intent can be established. Either direct evidence or circumstantial evidence can establish the intent. Direct evidence is when the person makes a statement to the police that they entered the location with the plan to steal an item.

Circumstantial evidence is when an inference of the individual’s intent can be made based upon certain facts. For instance, suppose a person is found in a house with burglary instruments and a bag full of valuables from inside the home. In that circumstance, it is reasonable to assume that they entered with the specific intent to commit a theft and will be convicted of first-degree burglary.[2] In the case of second-degree burglary of a store, if a person is caught stealing and did not have any cash to pay for the items, then it is circumstantial evidence of the individual’s intent when they entered the store.

What Is The Difference Between Theft, Burglary, And Robbery In California?

Theft is taking someone’s property, which could happen without their knowledge (e.g., you steal someone’s wallet that they temporarily left on the table in a restaurant). Robbery is the unlawful taking of property from another by either force or fear (e.g., you steal someone’s watch by holding a gun to their head and threatening to kill them if they don’t comply). With burglary, you typically enter someone’s property (e.g., home) to commit a felony, which might involve stealing but could involve another type of felony offense.

A conviction of any property crime can lead to serious time behind bars and other disadvantages that may alter the course of your life. The implications are profound even if you do not have a criminal record before the alleged property crime incident. At My Rights Law, we provide the defense help you need to fight these charges effectively.

What Are The Punishments For PC 459 Burglary Crimes In California?

Common penalties can include:

  • Jail time [3]
  • Community Service
  • Fines [4]
  • Probation
  • Restitution
  • Restraining Orders

More specifically, with a first-degree burglary conviction, you face up to six years behind bars. Additionally, you may receive up to a $10,000 fine. A conviction of first-degree burglary may count as one strike under CA’s three strikes law. Moreover, if you burglarize an inhabited dwelling, under California law, you generally will not be granted probation[5].

With a second-degree burglary conviction (typically called commercial burglary), you face up to one year behind bars and a $1,000 fine if the offense is classified as a misdemeanor. You face up to three years behind bars and a $10,000 fine if the offense is classified as a felony.

Fines and other punishment could be more severe based on your criminal past (prior convictions) and your activities while committing the burglary (which could bring about additional criminal charges). Moreover, if you are convicted of CA’s burglary crimes, each time someone accesses a background check in your name — which only requires an internet connection to conduct — your burglary conviction could show up, making it a problem to move on with your life.

What Are The Defenses To Burglary PC 459

Many defenses could apply to burglary. Here are some of the possible defenses that might apply to your situation:

Consent by the owner or person in charge is an absolute defense to the crime of burglary in violation of California law. The consent could be that the individual being charged with the crime is the owner or if the actual owner agrees to let the person inside the building knowing that the individual had the intent to commit a theft.

Intoxication may be a defense against burglary because it hinders the ability of the defendant to form the required specific intent. Nevertheless, it must be that someone else drugged the defendant. In most circumstances, voluntary intoxication is not a defense.

Because of the significant consequences to a person charged with a burglary crime, it is essential to immediately hire a lawyer for burglary charges as soon as you are either scrutinized or charged with an offense.

My Rights Law – California Burglary Lawyers In Your Corner

My Rights Law represents individuals accused of burglary in violation of California Penal Code 459 PC. A criminal defense attorney at our firm will review your case and make a plan to give you the best defense possible. We will file motions and determine how to effectively argue your case to convince the prosecutor or the judge that the issue is weak and the charges should be dismissed. Reach out to our criminal defense law firm by calling (888) 702-8882 or completing our secure web form to schedule your free consultation today.

FOOTNOTES
[1] CALCRIM 1700 – (Pen. Code, § 459).
[2] PC 461.
[3] PC 461.
[4] PC 461.
[5] California Penal Code 462 PC.

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