A burglary offense is among one of the more serious offenses a person could be charged with considering the potential of serving time in jail pending a conviction, as well as the requirement to pay expensive fines. Those facing such an offense should immediately retain the help of one of our distinguished attorneys at Leifert & Leifert.
A Deerfield Beach burglary lawyer could take the time to sit with you, review the details of your case, and help you build a solid defense in an attempt to lessen the severity of the potential penalties or dismiss the case altogether. To get started on your case, schedule a consultation today.
Elements of Burglary in Deerfield Beach
Florida law describes burglary as entering a home, building, or means of transportation without permission and with nefarious intent. Burglary can also be committed if the person initially invited remains on the premises to commit a crime after permission is rescinded. Florida divides burglary into three degrees of a felony, first-degree being the most severe with punishment up to life in prison.
What degree you are charged with depends on several factors, including whether you were armed, assaulted someone on the premises, did considerable property damage, were stealing drugs, or committed the burglary during a state of emergency, such as a hurricane, during which large swaths of Florida are evacuated. A defense lawyer skilled in defending burglary charges in the local area could review your charges to mount a suitable defense.
Proving Intent in a Burglary Charge
You might argue after being charged with a burglary that you had no intent to commit a crime after entering premises without permission. Intent is one of the elements of burglary and proving you did not have it could be a valid defense. At trial, Florida Statutes Sec. 810.07 dictates that the Florida courts will accept as prima facie (on its face) evidence that you had intent if you entered the premises stealthily. You should contact a Deerfield Beach criminal defense attorney to help refute any burglary elements that do not apply to your case.
Defenses to Burglary Charges in Deerfield Beach
Along with disproving the intention to commit a crime when entering or remaining on said premises, other defenses to burglary charges include that the prosecutor cannot prove the defendant is the perpetrator or that they had a weapon if charged with a first-degree felony.
Proving the Identity of the Burglary Suspect
In criminal cases, the burden of proof rests with the prosecutor, while the defense offers reasons why the prosecutor is mistaken. If a prosecutor offers eyewitnesses who swear they saw the accused, or surveillance camera footage showing someone acting stealthily, the defense can argue that eyewitnesses are often mistaken, or the camera footage is not clear enough for positive identification.
Proving the Suspect Had a Weapon
When charged with armed burglary, a first-degree felony, the prosecutor must produce the weapon the defendant is accused of using. Sometimes, zealous prosecutors will try charging armed burglary when the accused had burglary tools, such as lockpicks, hammers, and crowbars. Although these could be used to harm another person, a defense attorney is likely to argue under Florida Statutes Sec. 810.06 that possession of burglary tools is a third-degree felony, with punishment much less severe than for a first-degree felony.
A Deerfield Beach Burglary Attorney is Standing By
You have a lot at stake if you have been charged with burglary. Depending on the facts surrounding your case, you could spend up to the rest of your life in prison. You need an advocate to protect your rights. A Deerfield Beach burglary lawyer at Leifert & Leifert is standing by to talk to you.
Our professional legal team can review your arrest records, talk to you in-depth, interview witnesses, and formulate a defense strategy with the best outcome for you in mind. Call today to learn more about your case.