Burglary in the Second Degree

The basic language constituting Burglary in the Second Degree (NY PL 140.25) is the same as Burglary in the Third Degree (NY PL 140.20). That is, if you knowingly enter or remain in a building with the intent to commit any crime, you are guilty of this offense. The difference between the two degrees, however, is significant including the potential punishment. Burglary in the Second Degree is a “C” violent felony punishable by a mandatory minimum term of incarceration of three and one half years up to a maximum fifteen years in state prison.

The main difference found in Burglary in the Second Degree is as follows:

New York Penal Law 140.25(1)

If while entering the building, inside the building or while leaving the building you or another participant is armed with a deadly weapon (a gun, for example), causes physical injury (something potentially as simple as a bloodied and swollen lip) to another person who is not involved in the crime, uses or threatens the use of a dangerous instrument (can be a lamp, vase or something dangerous based on the manner in which is used), or displays what appears to be a firearm, then Burglary in the Second Degree will likely be charged.

New York Penal Law 140.25(2)

Subsection (2) of New York Penal Law 140.25 is a part of a prosecutor’s extremely potent arsenal. If you enter or unlawfully remain in a building with the intent to commit a crime and that building is a “dwelling,” then the charge will be “bumped up” to a “C” felony.

A “dwelling” is defined as a building that is usually occupied by people for “lodging” at night. In other words, if you enter a home or an apartment, even without any violence whatsoever, with the intent to commit a crime, the offense will automatically be bumped up. Even worse, if you enter a commercial building with apartments upstairs and you never enter those apartments, Burglary in the Second Degree can be charged.

For further information on the crime of Burglary, please review the New York Criminal Lawyer Blog at newyorkcriminallawyer-blog.com. Information regarding Burglary and other statutes as well as legal decisions and newsworthy cases can be found there as well.

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