In this post, we’re going to take a look at some of the terms, definitions, and charges regarding burglary under New York penal law. First, let’s define our terms.

Criminal trespass and burglary; definitions of terms

  • Premises is basically the same as building.
  • Building basically includes any structure or vehicle used as lodging, or as a school of some sort, or a motor truck, or motor truck trailer. When a building consists of two or more untis, each unit is a separate building and part of the main building.
  • A dwelling is a building that’s occupied by someone.
  • Night is the period thirty minutes after sunset and thirty minutes before sunrise.
  • To enter or remain unlawfully, you’d have to stay somewhere you’re not privileged to. Someone who enters or remains on public property does this with the privilege to do so, unless he goes against an order not to do so. A privilege to enter or remainin a building that’s partly open to the public isn’t a privilege to remain in the part that’s not public.

Trespass

You’re guilty of trespass when you knowingly enter and/or remain on premises. Trespass is a violation.

Criminal trespass in the third degree

You’re guilty of criminal trespass in the third degree when you knowingly enter a building that’s fenced, or if the building is used as a school or children’s camp, or if it’s located in a city with a population of more than one million and where the building is used as a school. Criminal trespass in the third degree is a class B misdemeanor.

Criminal trespass in the second degree.

You’re guilty of this particular crime when you knowingly enter a dwelling, or if you’re required to maintain registration under certain laws and you knowingly enter a school or other similar building knowing that the victim of the offense that they’re required to have registration for attends or formerly attended the school. It’s not an offense if you’re lawfully registered as a student at the school, if you’re participating in a school event, or if you’re the parent of a student at the school. Criminal trespass in the second degree is considered to be a class A misdemeanor.

Criminal trespass in the first degree.

You’re guilty of this crime when you knowingly enter a building, and while committing this crime, possess an explosive or deadly weapon, or possess some sort of firearm and enough ammunition to discharge this firearm, or if you know that another participant in the crime possesses a firearm. This particular crime is a class D felony.

Burglary in the third degree.

You’re guilty of burglary in the third degree if you enter a building with intent to commit a crime. This is a class D felony.

Burglary in the second degree

You’d be guilty of this crime if you knowingly entered a building with the intent to commit a crime, and while in the building you were armed with explosives or a deadly weapon, or caused physical injury to anyone who isn’t a participant in the crime, or use or threaten the use of some sort of deadly instrument, or display what looks to be a firearm, or if the building’s a dwelling. This crime is a class C felony.

Burglary in the first degree

To be guilty of this crime, you’d have to enter or remain in a dwelling while intending to commit a crime, and, while there, either be armed with explosives or a deadly weapon, cause injury to someone who’s not part of the crime, or use or threaten the use of a dangerous implement. This one is a class B felony.

Possession of burglar’s tools

You’re guilty of this crime when you possess any tool, instrument or some other type of article that’s usually used for committing crimes of forcible entry into premises. This crime is punishable as a class A misdemeanor.

Unlawful possession of radio devices

The term radio device basically means a device that can receive wireless transmission on a frequency that’s used for police officers, or any device that can transmit and receive a wireless transmission. You’re guilty of this when you possess a radio device while intending to use it to commit a robbery, burglary, larceny, gambling, or else a violation of certain provisions. This crime is a class B misdemeanor.

So, when the letter of the law is broken down in this way, it becomes much less complicated and much more accessible. If you’re facing any kind of legal problem, get in touch with us at Joseph Potashnik and Associates, PC. It’ll be the best thing you do today.