When many people consider burglary, they may have certain ideas about what this offense entails. However, burglary has a broader meaning than many people realize.
Most people may associate burglary with theft. According to the Texas Legislature, people do not need to take someone’s personal property to face burglary charges. Instead, a burglary occurs when people enter a structure without permission. This structure could take several different forms. It may be a place where people live, such as a home or an apartment building. It can also be a structure where people work, such as an office building or a warehouse. Vehicles also fall under this category.
What are the elements of burglary?
Unpermitted entrance is one aspect of burglary. However, there is another important element of this offense. People usually need to have the intention to commit another offense once they are in a structure. This additional offense could be theft. However, people can also face burglary charges if they intended to threaten or harm the occupants of a structure. Intending to damage the building or vehicle can also result in these charges.
What is the penalty for burglary?
People may face a different penalty depending on the situation. Legal officials may charge someone with a Class A misdemeanor for entering a vehicle. For the burglary of a house, members of law enforcement may impose second-degree felony charges. If people intended to harm the occupants, they could face first-degree felony charges instead. If people receive a conviction, they may need to pay a fine, as well as spend time in prison.
People may face more serious consequences if they have prior burglary convictions on their record.