Albuquerque Burglary Lawyer Discusses New Mexico Burglary Laws
It can be difficult to understand the differences between New Mexico’s property offenses unless you’re an Albuquerque burglary lawyer. There are numerous property-related crimes under New Mexico law, including theft, burglary, robbery, and larceny. It’s important to understand their differences — as well as how a burglary or other conviction can impact your life.
New Mexico’s Burglary Laws
Burglary is the unauthorized entry of a dwelling, vehicle, or other structure with the intent to commit a felony or theft. However, there are a variety of burglary charges, including:
- Aggravated Burglary: when the offender has a deadly weapon or commits battery (hitting or touching a victim in a harmful or offensive way),
- Home Invasion Burglary: breaking into a home or dwelling with the intent to commit a theft or felony, and
- Possession of Burglary Tools: the possession of tools commonly used in a burglary under circumstances that show intent to commit a crime.
Sometimes, these offenses are tacked together. For example, you could be charged with both an aggravated burglary and a home invasion burglary. An Albuquerque burglary lawyer can help you understand your criminal charges and put together the best possible defense.
Burglary is frequently confused with robbery and larceny. While burglary involves a breaking and entering of a structure, robbery and larceny have different legal requirements.
- Larceny: A broad category of crimes involving the stealing of something of value. These crimes include the stealing of goods, services, and identity theft.
- Robbery: Theft from another person while using force or threatening force or violence.
Criminal trespass charges, which involve entering property without permission or after being asked to leave, are typically less serious and frequently are misdemeanors.
Criminal Penalties for Burglary
New Mexico’s criminal penalties vary, depending on the type of crime and the value of the stolen property. They include:
- Aggravated burglary: up to nine years in prison and a $10,000 fine (second degree felony),
- Home Invasion Burglary: up to three years in prison and a $5,000 fine (third degree felony)
- Burglary of Another Structure: up to 18 months in prison and a $5,000 fine (second degree felony), and
- Possession of Burglary Tools: up to 18 months in prison and a $5,000 fine (fourth degree felony).
A skilled Albuquerque burglary lawyer may be able to reduce your sentence or charges. And, depending on your circumstances, you may be able to completely avoid jail time through deferred sentencing or other sentencing alternatives.
There are many defenses to burglary charges. They include innocence, lack of criminal intent, and procedural issues (such as an unlawful search and seizure by law enforcement). When you hire an experienced criminal defense lawyer, he or she will review your case in detail and build a customized defense strategy based on the facts and issues surrounding your case.
Do I Need an Albuquerque Burglary Lawyer?
If you have been charged with a theft crime, you should contact an Albuquerque burglary lawyer as soon as possible. A burglary conviction can result in significant jail time, fines, and the stigma of a felony conviction. At Twohig Law Firm, we provide our clients with aggressive and personalized defenses. Contact us today for a confidential evaluation.