Burglary Involving a Firearm
Burglary involving a firearm is an extremely serious charge in Florida. If convicted, you would face mandatory minimum penalties and may even face up to life in prison. It is important to retain a Sarasota burglary defense lawyer with an excellent reputation who understands which defenses are most likely to succeed in your specific situation. Hanlon Law protects the rights of people charged with burglary involving a firearm. We may be able to build a strong defense on your behalf.Elements of Burglary Involving a Firearm
A prosecutor can establish burglary under Florida Statutes section 810.02 if they can show beyond a reasonable doubt that you went into a dwelling, structure, or conveyance that another person possessed or owned, and you intended to commit a crime in the property when you entered it. Burglary involving a dwelling, structure, or conveyance can also be shown if you had permission to enter the property but stayed after the permission was withdrawn while intending to commit a crime there, you stayed surreptitiously on the premises while intending to commit a crime, or you stayed with the intent of committing a forcible felony.
Section 810.02(2) provides that burglary will be charged as a first-degree felony if you were or became armed with a dangerous weapon or explosives while you were committing the burglary. A firearm would likely count as a dangerous weapon. For instance, if someone went into a neighbor’s house without permission and with a handgun, intending to rape her, they could face charges for burglary involving a firearm.
Under section 810.02(2), a conviction for first-degree felony burglary involving a dangerous weapon can result in life imprisonment. Alternatively, as provided in section 775.082, you could face up to 30 years in prison.10/20/Life Law
The 10/20/Life Law sets forth mandatory minimum penalties that could apply to burglary in which there was possession of a firearm. Mandatory minimum penalties are penalties over which the court has no discretion; this means that the court cannot consider mitigating circumstances and must impose at least the mandatory minimum sentence specified by the statute. However, the court can impose a longer sentence of incarceration beyond the mandatory minimum.
The mandatory minimum penalties are tiered. If there was actual possession of a firearm during a burglary, you generally will be sentenced to at least 10 years in prison. However, the mandatory minimum sentence for burglary of a conveyance involving possession of a firearm is three years.
If you are convicted of burglary involving a firearm, and you discharged a firearm in the course of the burglary, you will face at least 20 years in prison. For instance, if someone went into a business with a firearm, intending to commit a robbery, and they discharged the firearm to scare an employee into submission, they would face a minimum of 20 years in prison. Furthermore, if somebody suffered death or great bodily harm as a result, the defendant would face at least 25 years in prison and up to life in prison.Defenses to Burglary Involving a Firearm
Each situation is unique. Our attorneys may be able to develop a strong defense on your behalf. It may be appropriate to defend the case by raising a reasonable doubt about one or more elements. For instance, we may be able to raise a reasonable doubt about whether you entered or stayed on the premises with the intent of perpetrating a crime there. Under other circumstances, we might be able to show that you had permission or license to come inside with a firearm or stay inside with the firearm. There may be situations in which it is appropriate to defend on the basis that the premises were open to the public at the time of the events.
Sometimes we might challenge the procedures used by the police to conduct the investigation, with the goal of suppressing evidence that was obtained illegally. For instance, we may be able to challenge a prosecutor’s use of admissions that you made during a custodial interrogation that was conducted without giving a Miranda warning.
Even if we cannot get the charges completely dismissed, we may be able to influence the proceedings so that you receive a lower sentence, are not subject to mandatory minimums, or do not face additional firearms charges.Retain a Sarasota Lawyer to Defend Against Burglary Charges
If you are charged with burglary involving a firearm in the Sarasota area, it is imperative to retain a dedicated attorney. Will Hanlon at Hanlon Law has protected the rights of the accused since 1994, and he understands the strategies that are likely to best protect you. Call Hanlon Law at 941-462-1789 or complete our online form.