Massachusetts Burglary Laws and Penalties
The laws of Massachusetts are complex and can be confusing. The exact charge and penalty you face depends on the facts of your case. There are several different burglary laws:
Burglary Laws, Defined
Burglary is defined as breaking and entering a home of another in the nighttime with the intent of committing a felony.
It doesn’t matter if the felony is actually committed or not, merely that you (allegedly) intend to do so. Usually, this felony is theft.
If you are accused of burglary, you will face felony charges which under the statute have a maximum of up to 20 years in prison. If you are accused of a second or greater offense, you will face no less than 5 years in prison as a minimum.
Armed Burglary or Burglary with Assault
If you burgle a home and the home is occupied, you face even harsher penalties. If you do so with a weapon, you will face a mandatory minimum sentence of no less than 15 years for a first offense. If you do not have a weapon but make an assault on someone occupying the residence, you will face a minimum of 10 years for a first offense.
Prior convictions will only serve to increase the mandatory minimum sentence you are subject to. Similarly, if this isn’t your first offense, the law prevents you from serving probation in lieu of prison time.
There are many variables to consider when facing burglary charges. We can help you understand the charges you face and what they might mean for your future. Having represented numerous clients in the criminal courts of Massachusetts, we can work to aggressively defend you as well.
Contact our offices today to discuss your charges and how we might be able to help.