People get arrested in lots of different scenarios. One scenario that is more common than you might think involves getting arrested on robbery or burglary charges related to property that belongs to the alleged perpetrator. Our Sarasota theft crime attorneys know that while you might not think that you could get convicted for breaking into your own home or taking back your own property, these cases aren’t always as straightforward as they initially seem.
Let’s look at some possible scenarios:
1. You Got Arrested for Breaking Into Your Own Home
First, let’s say you got arrested for breaking into your own home. Maybe a concerned citizen called the police while you were searching for your hidden key, or maybe someone saw you go in through the window because you left your keys inside.
Generally speaking, you cannot be found guilty of burglarizing your own home. In order to be guilty of burglary in Florida, you must enter a dwelling “with the intent to commit an offense therein.” If you were simply trying to get into your house because you accidentally locked yourself out, there is nothing criminal about what you were doing.
But, what if you were involved in a domestic dispute? Or, what if you got agitated or violent with the police officer who arrested you? In each of these situations, it is possible that you could be charged with (and convicted of) a crime. If prosecutors allege that you intended to commit a crime of domestic violence, or if prosecutors charge you with breach of the peace, disorderly conduct, eluding the police or assaulting a police officer, these charges could very well lead to a conviction.
2. You Got Arrested for Taking Back Your Own Property
Now, let’s say you are being charged with robbery, but the property involved was yours from the beginning. You were simply taking back what was rightfully yours. Are you guilty of the crime alleged?
Here too, the answer depends on the circumstances involved. Did the other person steal your property? Had you given your property away? Had you rented or sold it? How did you attempt to retrieve the property—assuming it was in fact rightfully yours? These are all highly relevant facts. Even if the property was yours, if someone else was in rightful possession, then attempting to deprive that person of custody of the property could constitute a criminal offense.
It is also important to note that robbery is a serious crime—as it involves, “the use of force, violence, assault, or putting in fear.” As a result, even if the property in question was yours, you may still need to be very careful to assert a strategic defense.
Arrested? Discuss Your Case with Our Sarasota Criminal Defense Attorneys for Free
If you are facing a burglary or robbery charge involving your own home or property, our Bradenton and Sarasota criminal defense attorneys can help. To schedule a free and confidential consultation, call 941-404-8909 or tell us how we can reach you online now.