Costa Mesa Burglary or California Penal Code 459 is described as entering someone else’s residence, and doing so with one of two intents:
1. To rob or steal
2. To commit a felony, such as embezzlement, murder or another crime
These intentions however are not the main distinctions between first and second degree burglary. Instead, the location in which the burglary takes place will affect how the burglary case is prosecuted.
Costa Mesa First Degree Burglary vs. Second Degree Burglary
When a burglar commits this crime where someone resides, it’s prosecuted as first-degree burglary. The consequences for doing so will be up to six years in prison, in addition to up to a ten thousand dollar fine.
Second-Degree Burglary is handled differently, and may be classified as a misdemeanor or felony. This crime occurs anywhere outside a residential property. Misdemeanor charges for second-degree burglary in Costa Mesa are up to one year in jail and up to six thousand in fines.
Felony charges for second-degree burglary in Costa Mesa on the other hand are up to three years in prison and up to ten thousand in fines.
The following could be considered an example of a Costa Mesa burglary offense:
Fernanda recently had a really good job, but she was fired and has now fallen on tough times. To make ends meet, Fernanda and her friends put together a plan to rob a Costa Mesa shop. The shop owner reportedly leaves a lot of money in the cash register after hours, so Fernanda and her two friends put a plan together and break into the shop. Unknown to Fernanda, there are security cameras that catch her and her friends burglarizing the store. Police use the surveillance to identify Fernanda and she is later arrested and charged with second-degree burglary. If the store owner lived in the store, prosecutors could charge Fernanda with first-degree burglary.
How is sentencing arranged, and what factors influence how much time a burglar serves in jail or prison?
The court will refer to California Penal Code 459 for guidelines on minimum and maximum sentencing. To determine how much time a guilty offender serves, the court will weigh his or her criminal history, if a firearm or deadly weapon were used during the course of the burglary; if anyone was injured; and if so – the severity of these physical injuries.
If you’re facing Burglary charges in Costa Mesa, the Costa Mesa defense attorneys at MacGregor & Collins can help you. When your freedom is on the line, hiring a skilled burglary attorney to help protect your freedom is one of the most important decisions you can make. Call us today to find out how we can help.