Charlotte Breaking and Entering Defense Lawyers

Breaking and entering are one of the oldest crimes recognized in human history. Breaking into someone’s dwelling or home has long been considered a crime. People engage in breaking and entering for lots of different reasons, including searching for expensive property or jewelry or just being mischievous. The punishments for breaking and entering vary in North Carolina. One of the biggest issues in proving breaking and entering charges comes down to the defendant’s intent.

Contact Our Experienced Charlotte Criminal Defense Lawyers Today

At Arnold & Smith, PLLC, we fight hard for our clients’ constitutional rights. We understand that the criminal justice system is complicated and often overwhelming. That is why we use our decades of combined legal experience to help clients navigate the process. Our legal team will investigate your case, discover evidence, and create a strong defense on your behalf. Contact our experienced criminal defense lawyers today to begin your criminal defense.

Breaking and Entering Charges in Charlotte, North Carolina

North Carolina recognizes several different degrees of breaking and entering charges. First, breaking into a dwelling house is a crime when you do any of the following:

  • Enter someone’s house with the intent to commit any felony or larceny, or
  • You begin to commit a larceny or felony in the house, and
  • You break into the dwelling during the night,

then you will face Class D felony charges.

Breaking or Entering into a Place of Religious Worship

North Carolina law intentionally protects places of worship. When these elements are met, you will face Class G felony charges. This crime requires the prosecutor to prove the following elements:

  • The defendant breaks and enters into a building that is a chapel, church, temple, longhouse, synagogue, mosque, or any other religious building
  • The building was regularly used and identifiable as a place of worship
  • The defendant has the intent to commit a larceny or felony
Breaking or Entering Into a Building

If you break into any other building with the intent to commit any larceny or felony or to terrorize or injure someone inside, you can face Class H Felony charges. If you break and enter into a building by mistake or wrongfully, you will face Class 1 misdemeanor charges. This would include any uninhabited house, any dwelling, a building under construction, or any other structure that is designed to secure any activity or property inside it.

Defenses to Breaking and Entering Charges

One of the best defenses to breaking and entering is that you did not intend to commit a crime on the premises. An example would be when someone breaks into their neighbor’s house to use their pool table while they were on vacation. When this happens, you will face misdemeanor charges which are must less serious than felony larceny charges.

North Carolina prosecutors will push to prove that you intended to commit a crime when you broke into the dwelling place. When they can prove that you intended to commit a crime, they can charge you with felony breaking and entering and you will serve at least a year of jail time if convicted.

Punishment for Breaking and Entering

The punishment for breaking and entering depends on how severe the charge against you is as well as your criminal record. Your sentence must be classified as intermediate, active, or community, depending on the details of your case. Felony charges in North Carolina carry the following sentences:

  • Class A Felony – Life imprisonment without parole, or death
  • Class B1 Felony – Between 144 months in prison and Life without Parole
  • Class B2 Felony – Between 94 and 393 months in prison
  • Class C Felony – Between 44 and 182 months imprisonment
  • Class D Felony – Between 38 months, and up to 160 months in prison
  • Class E Felony – A minimum of 15 months, and a maximum of 63 months in prison
  • Class F Felony – Between 10 and 41 months imprisonment
  • Class G Felony – A minimum of eight months, and a maximum of 31 months imprisonment
  • Class H Felony – Between four and 25 months in prison
  • Class I Felony – Between three and 12 months imprisonment

Active sentences for North Carolina misdemeanors include the following:

  • Class A1 Misdemeanor – Up to 150 days in jail
  • Class 1 Misdemeanor – Up to 120 days in jail
  • Class 2 Misdemeanor – Up to 60 days in jail
  • Class 3 Misdemeanor – Up to 20 days in jail
We can Help

If you are facing breaking and entering charges, contact our lawyers as soon as possible to schedule your free consultation. Call us now at 704-370-2828 to speak with our lawyers to explore your legal options or fill out our contact form. Now taking cases throughout North Carolina with offices in Uptown Charlotte, Mooresville and Monroe.