As criminal defense attorneys, we believe every accused person—regardless of their alleged crime—deserves to tell their side of the story. When you need an advocate to fight for your future, we’re here for you. Contact us online to schedule a consultation.
Burglary is one of the most commonly committed crimes in Georgia and one of the most feared property crimes everywhere. It’s also one of the most prosecuted.
Contrary to popular belief, burglary is not simply stealing or committing robbery—it is a distinct type of theft charge with unique penalties, consequences and implications.
If you’ve been charged with committing burglary, you need to understand what’s at stake. You’re not just facing a potential felony—you’re on the brink of losing a number of freedoms, whether or not you’re actually guilty. That’s why avoiding conviction is of the utmost importance.
At Joseph Williams Law, we specialize in protecting the rights of the accused by providing an expertly crafted legal strategy and robust defense. Keep reading to learn about burglary crimes in Georgia, potential penalties and how our burglary attorneys can advocate for you.
If you’re facing burglary charges, you need to start building a bulletproof defense NOW. Luckily you don’t have to do it alone. Contact our law firm at (912) 259-6548 to speak with a trusted legal strategist today.
Why Hire a Burglary Defense Attorney?
Burglary isn’t something people do for fun—it’s typically a crime of desperation. If you’ve been charged with a theft offense (whether or not you actually committed it), there’s a good chance you’re not in an ideal financial situation.
You may try to save money by going with the public defender rather than hiring a criminal defense attorney. That could be a critical mistake.
To be clear: There’s nothing wrong with public defenders. They’re some of the smartest, most generous and hardworking lawyers around. However, they’re also extremely overworked, which means they may not have time to thoroughly investigate the details of your case and strategize with you.
If you’re hoping to avoid a felony conviction, you need to partner with someone who has the time, resources and expertise to dedicate to your case. Fortunately, we do. Our burglary attorney will work tirelessly to see that your charges are beat, dropped, reduced or dismissed.
What Is Burglary in Georgia?
Burglary is more complicated than simply breaking and entering. To be charged with burglary in Georgia, a prosecutor will need to prove two essential elements: 1) You unlawfully entered or remained in a protected structure with 2) the intent to commit a felony therein.
The term unlawful entry refers to entering a structure—whether it’s a home, business, car, boat or somewhere else—without permission or authority to do so. Your actions can be considered unlawful entry even if the space is unoccupied and even if you didn’t enter by force. Of the two elements, this is the easier to prove.
‘Intent to commit a felony therein’ is a little more ambiguous, but the law is clear that this crime can be against property (such as theft) or against a person (including assault).
Types of Burglary
- First-degree burglary is the act of entering or remaining in an occupied or unoccupied dwelling, house or building used as a dwelling with the intent to commit a felony or theft.
- Second-degree burglary is similar to first-degree burglary and differs only in that it involves entering or remaining in a non-residential structure.
Every burglary charge is serious, regardless of degree. Any burglary conviction—even for first-time offenders—can result in years of imprisonment.
Potential Defenses to Burglary Charges
After your burglary lawyer has conducted a thorough investigation of your case, they will work with you to find the best defense. They will build their strategy around the specific details of your case and may utilize one of the following arguments:
- You are completely innocent.
- You had the owner’s consent to enter their property.
- You had no intent to commit an additional crime—against property or person—when you entered the structure.
- Although you broke something on the property, such as a window or door, you didn’t enter.
- You were intoxicated and unable to form the intent needed to prove burglary.
- The prosecution has insufficient evidence to convict you of a serious crime.
Far from a comprehensive list, these are just a few of the arguments your burglary attorney may utilize. With compelling evidence and expert presentation, your lawyer may be able to get your charges reduced, if not dropped altogether.
Burglary Lawyer FAQs
Understanding the minutiae burglary offenses in Georgia can be difficult, especially without a committed legal advocate. If you have questions about your burglary charge, the best thing you can do is speak to a criminal defense attorney. In the meantime, read through the answers to some of our most frequently asked questions.
• Is it a crime to possess burglary tools in Georgia?
Yes, under Georgia law, a person can be charged with possession of tools for the commission of a crime if they have a tool, explosive or other device that is commonly used to commit burglary or theft.
• What is criminal trespassing in Georgia?
Criminal trespassing refers to the crime of knowingly entering another person’s property without their consent or intentionally defacing, destroying or demolishing part of their property.
• Will I serve jail time if I’m convicted of second-degree burglary?
A second-degree burglary conviction is considered a felony and can result in one to five years in prison for the first conviction. The second time someone is convicted of burglary, they may face one to eight years in prison.
• What’s the difference between burglary, robbery and theft in Georgia?
Contrary to what most people think, the terms burglary, robbery and theft are not interchangeable. Whereas theft refers to intentionally taking someone else’s property, it does not involve unlawfully entering a private structure like burglary does. Robbery is different from both crimes in that it must involve taking someone’s property through force or threat of force.
Joseph Williams Law: Top Burglary Defense Lawyer
If you’ve been charged with burglary in Georgia, you’re in a world of legal trouble. Without the right legal help, you could be looking at a felony conviction and years in prison. However, that doesn’t have to be your future.
When you partner with an experienced burglary attorney at Joseph Williams Law, you’re joining forces with the ultimate legal advocate. That’s because we apply the same focus, expertise and effort to your case as we would to our own. We’ll use every legal tool and strategy at our disposal to help you avoid conviction.
Ready to get started? Visit us online to schedule a case evaluation or give us a call at (912) 259-6548 to speak with a member of our legal team today.
how can we help you?
Are you in need of a qualified lawyer in South Georgia? Williams Law is here to help with unmatched knowledge of the law and a personal approach with your best interests at its center.
We offer free consultations: let us know the details about your case in the box below, and we will get back to you within 24 hours.