You can be charged with burglary of a vehicle, if you break into or enter a vehicle with the intent to commit theft, or any felony. To be charged with burglary of a vehicle, it’s not required that any part of your body actually enter the vehicle. In fact, you can be charged with burglary of a vehicle, if anything connected to your body enters the vehicle. For example, if you use a coat hanger to try and unlock a vehicle, with the intent to commit theft, you can be charged with burglary of a vehicle, even if you never physically enter the vehicle.
Burglary of a Vehicle is a Class A Misdemeanor
Burglary of a vehicle is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in the county jail and up to a $4000 fine. However, if you’ve previously been convicted of burglary of a vehicle, the minimum jail time you can receive is 6 months. If you’ve been previously convicted twice before for burglary of a vehicle, the offense is enhanced to a state jail felony, which carries a penalty range of 180 days to 2 years in the state jail, and a fine of up to $10,000. If you’ve been arrested and charged with burglary of a vehicle, you need serious legal help. You should call the Dallas criminal defense lawyers at Berlof & Newton, P.C. Our attorneys each have over 15 years of experience in the practice of criminal defense law. Free consultation. Call today, or contact one of our lawyers directly using the “Get Legal Help Now!” form in the left margin of this web page. Se habla español.
Texas Penal Code 30.04 Burglary Of Vehicles
(a) A person commits an offense if, without the effective consent of the owner, he breaks into or enters a vehicle or any part of a vehicle with intent to commit any felony or theft.
(b) For purposes of this section, “enter” means to intrude: (1) any part of the body; or (2) any physical object connected with the body.
(c) For purposes of this section, a container or trailer carried on a rail car is a part of the rail car.
(d) An offense under this section is a Class A misdemeanor, except that: (1) the offense is a Class A misdemeanor with a minimum term of confinement of six months if it is shown on the trial of the offense that the defendant has been previously convicted of an offense under this section; and (2) the offense is a state jail felony if:
(A) it is shown on the trial of the offense that the defendant has been previously convicted two or more times of an offense under this section; or (B) the vehicle or part of the vehicle broken into or entered is a rail car. (d-1) For the purposes of Subsection (d), a defendant has been previously convicted under this section if the defendant was adjudged guilty of the offense or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere in return for a grant of deferred adjudication, regardless of whether the sentence for the offense was ever imposed or whether the sentence was probated and the defendant was subsequently discharged from community supervision.
(e) It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the actor entered a rail car or any part of a rail car and was at that time an employee or a representative of employees exercising a right under the Railway Labor Act (45 U.S.C. Section 151 et seq.). Acts 1973, 63rd Leg., p. 883, ch. 399, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1974. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 900, Sec. 1.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1994; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 916, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999. Amended by: Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 308, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2007.
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