Bel Air, Maryland Burglary Lawyer
Vigorous Defense Against Harsh Accusations
The State of Maryland treats burglary charges as a serious offense, even when the supposed criminal act did not involve any physical harm being done to the victim. A burglary conviction can result in severe and life-altering consequences, such as incarceration, fines, and the complete destruction of the accused’s reputation in their community and workplace. To mitigate the worst of these consequences, you should give yourself a fighting chance by teaming up with Portner & Shure, P.A. Our Bel Air burglary attorneys are ready to hear your case and start building a strong defense in your name.
For a free consultation with our firm, dial (410) 286-1999 right away.
Maryland Burglary Law
Maryland divides burglary into four categories or degrees:
- First degree: 1st Degree burglary is defined as illegally breaking and entering into someone else’s dwelling with the intent to commit theft or a crime of violence. 1st Degree burglary is classified as a felony under Maryland law and carries a maximum penalty of 20 to 25 years in prison.
- Second degree: 2nd Degree burglary is defined as illegally breaking and entering into someone else’s storehouse with the intent to commit theft, a crime of violence, or arson. 2nd Degree burglary is classified as a felony under Maryland law and carries a maximum penalty of 15 to 20 years in prison.
- Third degree: 3rd Degree burglary is defined as illegally breaking and entering into someone else’s dwelling with the intent to commit a crime. 3rd Degree burglary is classified as a felony under Maryland law and carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.
- Fourth degree: 4th Degree burglary is defined as illegally breaking and entering into someone else’s dwelling or storehouse, or being on the property of another person, with the intent to commit theft. 4th Degree burglary is classified as a misdemeanor under Maryland law and carries a maximum penalty of 3 years in prison.
Trespassing & Burglary
Under Maryland’s trespassing statute, an individual is prohibited from entering another person’s property if a reasonable person would understand that they were not welcome there by the owner. For example, signs that say “do not trespass” make it obvious that the property is restricted. Unlike burglary, it does not matter if the individual entered the property with the intent to commit a crime because trespassing is a misdemeanor itself. A conviction can carry penalties ranging from 90 days to 2 years of incarceration.
Defenses to a Burglary Charge
People who are accused of committing a crime are legally presumed to be innocent, so the prosecution must prove a person’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Concerning burglary, the States’ Attorney has to prove that the accused enters the property with the intent to commit another crime. This is where the prosecution’s case can flounder. They might only have enough proof to show that the accused was committing the crime of trespassing, not burglary. Although, a burglary charge is not the same as a trespassing charge, so a conviction could still be impossible if the accused was never charged with trespassing at all.
Bring Decades of Experience to Your Case
For more than 25 years, the experienced Bel Air burglary defense attorneys at Portner & Shure, P.A. have been successfully representing clients for burglary charges. In addition to excellent reviews from prior clients, our reputation in Maryland legal communities can be seen with the numerous awards our attorneys have earned. Did you know that the American Institute of Criminal Law Attorneys of 2020 recently recognized our firm as one of Maryland’s “10 Best Law Firms”? It’s true!
Please call (410) 286-1999 or contact us online at your next opportunity.
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When you hire Portner & Shure, you can expect more from your representation. In addition to getting an attorney, you will get a committed advocates you has your best interests at heart.