Although pop culture and television often portrays the crime, California does not actually criminalize "breaking and entering." In fact, the crime of burglary does not require that you entered into the property you are accused of having burgled. You could be charged with burglary if you remove something from a car, structure, or property which is not locked and does not need to be broken into.
Even though the state of California does not have a specific violation for “breaking and entering,” there is a combination of penalties that can be charged to enhance a burglary charge if you allegedly broke something in an attempt to commit burglary. Breaking in involves gaining access into some edifice or structure by means of force or fraud. Entry is any way that you make your way into the structure, even if only partially (for example, your arm reaching into the inside of an open window).
These two components are generally associated with burglary, although this offense can involve the intention to commit other crimes. Since no forced entry is required, simply strolling into a property can fulfill the elements of burglary. California law criminalizes the willful entry onto someone else’s property with the intent of hindering or interfering with their property rights.
If you or loved one is charged with breaking and entering and you are looking to hire a West Covina criminal defense attorney for representation, we invite you to contact our firm.
We can provide you with a free consultation in our office, call us now at (626) 340-2326 to make an appointment.