What is Burglary?
According to Florida Statute, burglary means:
1. Entering a dwelling, a structure, or a conveyance with the intent to commit an offense therein, unless the premises are at the time open to the public or the defendant is licensed or invited to enter; or
2. Notwithstanding a licensed or invited entry, remaining in a dwelling, structure, or conveyance:
a. Surreptitiously, with the intent to commit an offense therein;
b. After permission to remain therein has been withdrawn, with the intent to commit an offense therein; or
c. To commit or attempt to commit a forcible felony, as defined in s. 776.08.
What are the penalties for burglary in Florida?
The penalties for burglary in Florida depend on several factors and range from a 3rd degree felony, punishable by five (5) years in prison, to a 1st degree felony punishable by life in prison. For example:
Burglary of an unoccupied structure or conveyance is a 3rd degree felony.
Burglary of a dwelling, regardless of whether it is occupied, or burglary of an occupied structure or conveyance is a 2nd degree felony. Burglary of an authorized emergency vehicle or of a structure or conveyance when the offense intended to be committed therein is theft of a controlled substance is also a 2nd degree felony.
If during the commission of a burglary, the offender makes an assault or battery or becomes armed within the dwelling, structure, or conveyance, with explosives or a dangerous weapon, the burglary may be charged as a 1st degree felony, punishable by life in prison. It is also a 1st degree felony if the person enters an occupied or unoccupied dwelling or structure, and uses a motor vehicle as an instrumentality, other than merely as a getaway vehicle, to assist in committing the offense, and thereby damages the dwelling or structure; or causes damage to the dwelling or structure, or to property within the dwelling or structure in excess of $1,000.
The penalties for burglary may also be enhanced under certain circumstances such as when the burglary is committed within a county that is subject to a state of emergency declared by the Governor and the perpetration of the burglary is facilitated by conditions arising from the emergency.
Can I be charged with burglary for breaking into a car?
Yes. The term “conveyance” is defined as “any motor vehicle, ship, vessel, railroad car, trailer, aircraft or sleeping car; and to enter a conveyance includes taking apart any portion of the conveyance.” This means that the simple act of reaching through an open window of a vehicle and touching another individual against their will can technically be charged as burglary with a battery, a 1st degree felony punishable by life in prison.
Contact a Naples & Ft. Myers Burglary Attorney
While there are many different forms of burglary in Florida, there are also several potential defenses. If you have been accused of burglary in the State of Florida and would like to Contact a Naples Burglary Attorney, please call 239-775-1004. Consultations are absolutely free and completely confidential.
Verderamo Law provides legal representation primarily in the fields of criminal law and personal injury law. While our offices are situated in Naples and Ft. Myers, Florida, we proudly represent clients throughout Collier and Lee Counties and their surrounding areas, including, but not limited to, Naples, Fort Myers, Bonita Springs, Estero, Cape Coral, Golden Gate, Immokalee, Lehigh, and Marco Island. Verderamo Law is located at 2662 Airport Pulling Rd S Naples, FL 34112. For more information, call (239) 775-1004.