Texas has a law that differs from other states surrounding the criminal offense of burglary. The defendant does not necessarily have to complete the burglary to be charged with burglary of habitation. The only legal requirement is that they entered the home with the intent to commit a theft or any other type of felony crime.

If you have been charged with burglary of habitation, you need to seek the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately. Burglary charges are taken very seriously in Texas and can lead to serious prison time and hefty fines. Contact The Greening Law Group of College Station, TX, and ask to schedule a free consultation.

How Does Texas Define Burglary of Habitation?

Under Texas law, burglary of habitation occurs when an individual enters a residence without receiving permission from the property owner to be there. This law applies to all types of residential properties that do not need to be occupied to be charged with the crime.

To be charged with the crime, a degree of theft must be present. For example, if an individual breaks into a home to take another person’s property but does not take anything, they can still be charged with the offense. However, it is crucial to understand that the prosecution must still prove that a burglary initially occurred to commit another crime (such as theft).

What are the Penalties for Burglary of Habitation?

The criminal offense of burglary of habitation is considered to be a second-degree felony in Texas. If convicted, you could face the following:

  • A prison sentence of two to 20 years
  • A fine ranging up to a maximum of $10,000

Suppose the defendant has a previous felony record or used a deadly weapon in the commission of the crime. In that case, the court may increase the charge to that of a third-degree felony which carries significantly more prison time and increased fines.

Are There Any Legal Defenses to Burglary of Habitation?

If you have been charged with burglary of habitation, some defenses may apply to your particular case. Some of the most common include the following:

  • The defendant had permission to enter the residence.
  • The defendant had no intention of committing a theft.
  • The defendant had no intention of committing a felony offense.
  • The defendant was misidentified as the intruder

How Can an Attorney Help Me With My Charges?

Although burglary of habitation is a serious crime in Texas, an experienced defense attorney can help build a strong defense on your behalf. Since one of the main elements that must be proven in a crime such as this involves intent, your defense attorney can advocate on your behalf that you did not have the intent to commit another felony such as theft.

Contact The Greening Law Group by calling 979-779-2000 and ask to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.