The basic definition of burglary is the unlawful entry of an occupied building or structure that is not open to the public with the intent to commit a crime therein. There are different degrees of burglary depending on the type of structure and whether anyone was actually present when the structure was entered.
- First degree burglary: A burglary is graded as a first-degree felony if the structure entered is a residence or if it is a business with someone present at any time during the commission of the offense. A burglary of a home when someone is present is not only a felony of the first-degree but it is also considered a strike under Pennsylvania law. Therefore, if it is your second strike and you are convicted, you are subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison. If it is your third strike, your sentence will be a minimum of 25 years and you may be sentenced up to life.
- Second degree burglary: A burglary is graded as a second-degree felony if the structure is a commercial establishment not adapted for overnight stay and no one is present during the commission of the offense. In other words, if it is a business, store or some separately secured area such as a garage. While a second-degree felony carries a maximum penalty of 10 years of incarceration, rarely is an individual facing that kind of time for a commercial burglary.
We’ll Prepare Your Defense
It is important that you do not talk to anyone, including law enforcement, if you are arrested for burglary. Anything you say may be used against you. Even if you believe, or are led to believe, that if you tell your story you will be released, any statement you give can be twisted to be used against you and to assist the prosecution. Remember that police officers are allowed to lie about information they have when interrogating suspects.
Attorney Brian M. Fishman, an experienced Philadelphia burglary attorney, spent over 4 years as an Assistant District Attorney in Philadelphia so he knows what to expect from the prosecution. This allows him to keep a step ahead when he works on your defense. Some possible defenses include, but are not limited to:
- The building was abandoned.
- There is insufficient evidence because there were no eyewitnesses.
- Even if there were eyewitnesses, they misidentified you as the perpetrator.
- There is no corroborating evidence such as proceeds from the burglary.
- You are not seen on the video surveillance used at a commercial location.
- Fingerprints do not connect you to the scene.
You can trust Attorney Brian M. Fishman to give you an honest assessment of your case. He does not make promises he cannot keep. He will fight zealously on your behalf and protect all of your constitutional rights.
The Fishman Firm, LLC, is a criminal law firm located in Philadelphia, PA. Attorney Brian M. Fishman is a criminal defense attorney who concentrates his practice on defending the rights of those accused of criminal offenses. He has successfully defended clients in a wide range of criminal cases, and will aggressively defend your rights in court and in negotiations outside the courtroom. If you have been charged with any criminal offense in Philadelphia, Montgomery, Delaware, Bucks or Chester county, contact Brian M. Fishman at his Philadelphia office to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Philadelphia criminal defense lawyer.