What is the Crime of Breaking and Entering?
The crime of breaking and entering sounds fairly straightforward: A person gets in trouble for breaking into a home. However, the laws surrounding breaking and entering in Michigan are far more nuanced, and if you are not careful, you could get in trouble or accused of the crime that you had no intention of committing. At the Van Den Heuvel Law Office, our experienced criminal defense attorneys have years of experience defending clients throughout Michigan accused of breaking and entering as well as other criminal offenses that the state has accused them of committing. To learn more about your legal options, call or contact our office today.
What is Breaking and Entering?
Breaking and entering is a crime that contains two parts: breaking into a place and entering that place. The breaking step refers to making entry into a building, vehicle, or container. It is important to note that a person can be arrested for breaking and entering into many things other than a home. Arrests can be made for breaking into a car, commercial truck, shipping container, business, warehouse, and many other buildings, and vehicles. In addition, extreme force does not need to be used in order to break into a space. Everything from the use of explosives to simply opening an unlocked door can be considered breaking.
Entering refers to making actual entry into the space broken into. A person’s entire body does not need to be inside in order to qualify as entering. Even sticking a hand or foot inside qualifies as entering, even if nothing is taken.
Penalties for Breaking and Entering
The penalties for breaking and entering can be very serious. If the state proves that a person broke and entered into a building with the intent to commit a felony or larceny of that place, the penalties can include up to 10 years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines. If the breaking and entering was committed while possessing a firearm, regardless of whether the firearm was used, the penalties are increased to up to 20 years in prison. Conviction also means having a permanent criminal record, probation, and other penalties associated with the crime.
What to do if You are Arrested
If you are arrested for suspicion of breaking and entering, the most important thing that you can do is call an attorney. Do not speak with the police, detectives, prosecutor, or even your family members before contacting an experienced criminal defense attorney to represent your case. Your lawyer will defend and protect your rights through the judicial process, from interviews with the authorities through your first arraignment, and if necessary all the way to trial.
Talk to Our Office Now
If you or a loved one has been arrested for breaking and entering, the clock is already ticking against you. Call the office or contact us today at the Van Den Heuvel Law Office to speak with an expert in Michigan criminal law today.