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Potential Defenses to Illinois Burglary Charges

May 4th, 2016 at 8:46 am

Illinois burglary charges, Rolling Meadows Criminal Defense AttorneyWhen you are facing burglary or residential burglary charges, the first thing that you should do is to consult with an experienced criminal defense lawyer. There are several possible defenses to these criminal charges that a criminal defendant can raise, depending on specific circumstances surrounding the alleged crime. Your lawyer can figure out if any defenses apply to your case after discussing the specifics of your alleged crime with you.

Potential Defenses to Burglary Charges

There can be a number of possible defense to burglary and residential burglary charges. Some potential defenses to criminal burglary charges can include:

  1. Consent was given. In order to commit burglary, the defendant must enter or remain in a building, house trailer, watercraft, aircraft, motor vehicle, railroad car, or any part thereof without authority. If the defendant had permission from the property owner to enter or be in the property that was allegedly burglarized, then the defendant may have an affirmative defense to the burglary charges.
  2. Lack of intent. The defendant must have had the intent to commit a felony or theft in order to be convicted on burglary charges. If the defendant lacked the requisite intent, the defendant cannot be convicted of burglary. It is possible that the defendant committed a lesser crime, but not specifically burglary.
  3. The property that was allegedly burglarized is not a “building or structure” or a “dwelling.” Under 720 ILCS 5/19-1(a), the “building or structure” must be one of a building, house trailer, watercraft, aircraft, motor vehicle, or railroad car. Under 720, ILCS 5/2-6, a “dwelling” must be a building, tent, vehicle, or other enclosed space where a person lives. If the location that was allegedly burglarized is something other than one of the buildings, structures, or a dwelling, as specified under the law, then the burglary charges could be dropped or reduced to a lesser offense.
  4. Mistaken identity. In a situation where a witness “identified” you as the alleged perpetrator of the burglary, you might be the unfortunate victim of a misidentification. If you are misidentified as the culprit, you may in fact be actually innocent of the alleged crime. If you have been misidentified, your criminal defense lawyer will work diligently to collect and present evidence to demonstrate your innocence.

Let Us Assist You with Your Case

If you are convicted on burglary charges, it can result in a felony conviction, which is a serious matter. Whatever the circumstances might be behind the allegations that you or a loved one committed burglary, it is important to talk with a skilled criminal defense lawyer who can help fight those burglary charges. Please do not hesitate to contact a compassionate Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney immediately if you are facing burglary or residential burglary charges in Illinois. Our attorneys are eager to help you.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=1876&ChapterID=53&SeqStart=62600000&SeqEnd=63400000

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/072000050K2-6.htm

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