Michigan Breaking and Entering a Building

Michigan Criminal Lawyer | Novi Breaking & Entering Attorney


MICHIGAN BREAKING & ENTERING LAWYER

Breaking and entering into a building is a felony under Michigan law. It is important to note that breaking and entering is different from the felony offense of home invasion as home invasion involves a dwelling home. It is also different from the misdemeanor offense of entering without permission (also known as ‘illegal entry’) which involves situations where there is no intention of committing a crime separate from entering into the building without permission (see below).

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Breaking and entering is a very serious offense that often involves questions of fact relating to what actually happened, and what a defendant’s intentions were. Michigan criminal attorney Jeffrey Buehner has the experience to identify these issues and the legal skills to exploit any weakness in the prosecutor’s case to your advantage.

For a free consultation with an experienced criminal attorney, call Jeffrey Buehner at (248) 865-9640.

Michigan Breaking & Entering With Intent to Commit a Felony or Larceny

A person who breaks and enters, with intent to commit a felony or a larceny therein, a tent, hotel, office, store, shop, warehouse, barn, granary, factory or other building, structure, boat, ship, shipping container, or railroad car is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years.

In order to convict a defendant of this offense the prosecutor must prove that the defendant:

  • Broke into a building. It doesn’t matter whether anything was actually broken, but some force must have been used. Opening a door, raising a window and taking off a screen are examples of enough force to count as Breaking. Entering a building through an already open door or window without using any force does not count as a breaking.
  • Entered the building. If the Defendant put any part of his body (hand, foot, etc…) into the building, that is enough to count as entry.
  • When the Defendant broke and entered the building, he intended to commit a felony or larceny.

Michigan Entering without Breaking

Entering without breaking is a 5 year felony offense. To prove this charge the prosecutor must prove the all of the elements for the above offense except the prosecutor doesn’t have to prove that you broke into the building:

Any person who, without breaking, shall enter any dwelling, house, tent, hotel, office, store, shop, warehouse, barn, granary, factory or other building, boat, ship, railroad car or structure used or kept for public or private use, or any private apartment therein, with intent to commit a felony or any larceny therein, shall be guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison not more than 5 years, or fined not more than $2,500.00.

Michigan Entering without Permission (‘Illegal Entry’)

Entering without permission is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 93 days in jail. It is charged in situations where there is no proof that the defendant had the intention of committing a crime other than entering the building without permission:

Any person who breaks and enters or enters without breaking, any dwelling, house, tent, hotel, office, store, shop, warehouse, barn, granary, factory or other building, boat, ship, railroad car or structure used or kept for public or private use, or any private apartment therein, or any cottage, clubhouse, boat house, hunting or fishing lodge, garage or the out-buildings belonging thereto, any ice shanty with a value of $100.00 or more, or any other structure, whether occupied or unoccupied, without first obtaining permission to enter from the owner or occupant, agent, or person having immediate control thereof, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

If you have been charged with Michigan breaking and entering and would like a free phone consultation with an experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney, call Jeffrey Buehner at (248) 865-9640 or fill out our Free Consultation form.