A charge of burglary is a serious offense because it is considered to be a victim crime. If you have been charged with burglary in Apache Junction, AZ, you should consult a criminal defense attorney who is experienced at defending Apache Junction burglary charges as soon as possible. Under Arizona law, there are different levels of burglary charges and all of them are categorized as felonies. Any felony conviction exposes you to potential prison sentencing along with other harsh penalties.
Arizona Burglary Law Facts
Below are some Arizona burglary law facts that may be unknown:
- A person can be arrested for burglary if they “intended” to steal something, even if they did not take a single item.
- Burglary to a residential property is more serious than burglary to commercial property.
- A person or accomplice must possess knowledge that the person committing the burglary used or possessed a firearm or other deadly weapon in order to be charged with First Degree Burglary.
- It is not necessary for the building or area to have been locked to be charged with burglary.
- It is not necessary for a person to be in the building during the burglary, in order to be charged.
- Burglary is often coupled with other criminal charges that often occur simultaneously, such as Criminal Trespassing.
- All burglaries are charged as felonies and expose the defendant to prison sentencing.
Arizona Burglary Classifications
The various classifications of burglary under Arizona law are specified under A.R.S. Title 13 Criminal Code, Chapter 15 Criminal Trespass and Burglary. Here are basic explanations for each:
- R.S. 13-1505: Possession of Burglary Tools (Class 6 Felony)
- R.S. 13-1506: Third Degree Burglary (Class 4 Felony)
- R.S. 13-1507: Second Degree Burglary (Class 3 Felony)
- R.S. 13-1508: First Degree Burglary (Class 3 – commercial / Class 2- residential)
Arizona burglary classifications range from higher numbered class felonies (least severe) to lower numbered class felonies (most serious). The only classification more serious than Class 2 First Degree Burglary is a Class 1 felony. These felonies are for the most serious crimes involving homicide or the taking of another person’s life.
Arizona Burglary Sentencing
Arizona burglary sentencing involves felony classifications and specifies penalty ranges with minimum to maximum severity. The court considers many different factors when determining sentencing. Here are some of those considerations:
- The presence of mitigating verses aggravating factors
- Repeat offense versus first-time offense
- Previous / severity of criminal record
- Existence of violence or harm to victim or victims
- The extent of harm to victim or victims
- Involvement or possession of a gun or other deadly weapon in the burglary
- Nature and value of property stolen
- The extent of damage to the vehicle, building or other property resulting from the burglary
- Other criminal offenses committed with the burglary (trespassing, assault, etc.)
What Can an Arizona Burglary Attorney Do for Me?
If you are charged with any classification of burglary under Arizona law, you should contact an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately. In many circumstances, your charges can be reduced or even dropped when your attorney can present compelling evidence that contradicts or calls into question the prosecuting party’s allegations.
A burglary defense attorney who knows Apache Junction can investigate your case and gather the necessary evidence to present a compelling case in your defense. Your actions, statements, prior criminal record (or lack of one) and a host of other factors can all have a serious bearing on your case. The attorneys of Matthew Lopez Law will leave no stone unturned when crafting your defense.
At Matthew Lopez Law, your initial consultation is absolutely free. Call or email us to schedule a consultation concerning your burglary charges right away. You can reach us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our attorneys will travel to wherever is most convenient for you to meet and speak about your case.