Under Texas criminal law, an individual could be charged with burglary or criminal trespass if he or she is suspected of having unlawfully entered into a building. However, these are considered separate crimes. Burglary is considered to be more serious than criminal trespass and subsequently, it can result in more severe penalties. If you’ve been charged with burglary, talk to a criminal defense lawyer about your case.

What Constitutes Burglary in Texas?

Criminal trespass involves the unlawful entry of an unauthorized individual into another person’s property. It may also involve the failure of a person to leave after having been given notice to leave. Burglary also involves these elements, with the additional element of intent to commit a crime. To prove that an individual committed burglary, the prosecutor must demonstrate that the individual had the intent to commit another offense other than unlawful entry, such as theft or assault. Your federal criminal attorney may point out that you can be charged with burglary even if you did not commit a crime other than unlawful entry, as long as the prosecutor can prove intent.

What Are the Potential Penalties?

Hiring a criminal defense lawyer is the best way to reduce the chances of conviction and harsh criminal penalties. If you’re convicted of unlawfully entering a residence, it is prosecuted as a second-degree felony. This could lead to between two and 20 years in a state prison. You could also be ordered to pay up to $10,000 in fines.

What Are Some Possible Defenses?

Your criminal defense attorney can develop legal strategies to defend you from the burglary charge. For example, he or she might argue that there is no evidence to prove your intent to commit another crime; that you were acting under a lawful duty when you entered the structure; or that you were a victim of entrapment.

Are you or a loved one facing felony charges? Arrange for aggressive legal representation today by calling the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass at (972) 954-4441. Our criminal defense attorney serving Dallas will thoroughly review your case, explain your legal rights, and defend your interests in court.