Denver Colorado Burglary - Questions and Answers

Colorado Burglary, C.R.S. 18-4-202, 18-4-203, Q & A

Are the Differences Between the Colorado Burglary Classes Important to Criminal Defense Lawyers?

They are very important as burglary in Denver comes in three classes in Denver, Arapahoe, Jefferson, Larimer, Douglas and Adams counties: first degree burglary, C.R.S. 18-4-202, second-degree burglary, C.R.S. 18-203 and third degree burglary, C.R.S. 18-4-204. Your criminal defense lawyer will explain that first- and second-degree burglary both relate to unlawful entry into a building or occupied structure to commit a crime. First-degree burglary has the additional elements that a person is assaulted or menaced (menacing) in the process or one of the participants in the crime is armed with a deadly weapon or explosives. Third-degree Burglary involves breaking into equipment like a vending machine or cash register.

How Do Colorado Burglary Charges Usually Arise?

Generally, after a relationship goes sour, the female "victim" tells the man to leave her residence or to not come back. The man then either refuses to leave, stating that he helped pay the rent, or he returns to pick up belongings after having been told to leave. In Denver and any other county criminal defense attorneys know that burglary requires that a crime intended to be committed at the time of entry. Otherwise, the crime is simply trespassing. The usual crime attached to a burglary charge is theft.

What Aggravates Burglary Charges in Colorado?

The use of force or violence in coming or going from the building or residence, or the possession of a deadly weapon, will greatly aggravate the case and cause a judge and district attorney to take a harsher approach. If the Denver or Fort Collins burglary involves controlled substances as the object of the theft, aggravated penalties are likely. Finally, it is seen as much less serious to burglarize a business compared to a house. The sanctity of our homes is highly valued, and going into a home will get you additional penalties. In addition, with Colorado's Make my Day Law, you could easily be killed coming into someone's house.

Can Hiding Out in a Business in Colorado Lessen the Charges Against Me?

Hiding out and remaining in a business after it closes (or in a home) will make you susceptible to the same charges for Burglary in Weld County or any other Colorado county.

What Issues Dominate the Cases We See as Far as Police Investigations?

Police will need to prove that the accused was inside the real property (house or business) in Arvada, Aurora, Castle Rock and Highlands Ranch, and the timing of the entry, to charge burglary. For example, if the accused has left the real property prior to police arrival, the police will question suspects and try to get them to admit they were at a particular property. Fingerprints will only be of limited value if the accused had been on the property earlier with permission. Of course, the location of the fingerprints will be an important factor. If stolen property is located, police will need to get admissions that the accused was in the property vs. found or purchased the stolen property.

It is never ok to talk with police about your Colorado burglary or theft charges. If police contact you, exercise your right to remain silent and call us immediately at 303-731-0719. Together, we can protect your future.

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