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Is Burglary Different Than Theft ?

Burglary is different than theft.  Theft is either grand theft if over $ 950 in value or petty theft if under.  Grand theft is a felony but can be reduced to a misdemeanor, petty theft is always a misdemeanor unless there are prior theft offenses.  Burglary is the entry in to a building with the intent to commit any theft, grand or petty, or any other felony.  It is the "entry with intent" which is the crime and is always a felony but can be reduced to a misdemeanor at some point, as long as the building entered was a commercial building and not a residence.  It is considered 2nd degree.

If the burglary, or entry with intent to steal or commit a felony is to a residence, it is a 1st degree and a strike under the 3 strikes law.  The Burglary section of the penal code (P.C.) is 459, if it is a residence it is a 459 per P.C. 460.  A 2nd degree carries up to 3 yerars prison and $ 10,000 fine plus restitution.  A 1st degree carries up to 6 years prison, $ 10,000 fine and restitution.  Many times the Burglary charge is added to theft cases if there is any indication the person formed the intent to steal or commit a felony before entry.  Often it is seen when bad checks or fraudulent credit cards are used because the person entered the bank or store to use the fraudulent card or checks.  The actual check or credit card chrages are seperate.

Having handled hundreds of 1st and 2nd degree Burglaries over more than 30 years across from the Vista Courts, Attorneys Nicholas and William Christoph know what to look for in these cases and what needs to be done to ensure the best possible outcome.  Call 760-941-5720 for a free consultation and evaluation of your case.

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