Understanding Different Illinois Burglary Charges

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Uncategorized

Illinois defense attorney, Illinois criminal lawyer, Illinois criminal law statutesBurglary of any kind is a serious crime with serious consequences facing those who get caught. When most of us picture a burglary, we think of someone in all black sneaking or breaking into a property in hopes of stealing something. While that description is accurate in many cases, there are actually many different charges in Illinois associated with burglary. Where you break in, how you break in, and what your intent is after breaking in are all factors that determine which burglary related charges will be brought against you. Those arrested for burglary often find themselves confused by the charges they are facing. Below, we break down a few of the most common burglary related charges in Illinois.


Illinois Law (720 ILCS 5/19-1) states that a person commits burglary when they knowingly enter a building, vehicle, watercraft, trailer, or train car with the intent to steal something. Most burglaries in Illinois are considered Class 2 felonies, meaning those charged with burglary in Illinois face a prison sentence of up to seven years. If, however, the burglary takes place at a church, a school, a daycare center, or a child care related facility, the charge can be raised to a Class 1 felony, and the punishment can carry a prison sentence of anywhere from four to 15 years.

Burglary Tools

According to criminal statute 720 ILCS 5/19 2, possession of burglary tools, or tools made for breaking and entering, is a Class 4 felony. Tools such as lock picks, explosives, and other devices made for breaking into someone else’s property are considered burglary tools, and possession of these tools in conjunction with the intent to commit theft could lead to a prison sentence of one to three years.

Additionally, anyone involved in selling or transferring a key or some kind of burglary tool to another who plans to use them for burglary is also a punishable offense. Unlawful sales of burglary tools charges carry potential prison sentences of one to three years.

Residential Burglary

Illinois law says that any case of burglary in a dwelling place is classified as residential burglary. This charge is considered more serious than burglary of a business or non lived on property. Probation is not available to those convicted of residential burglary, which is considered a Class 1 felony in Illinois. Those charged with residential burglary should expect a prison sentence of four to 15 years.

Criminal Trespass to a Residence

When someone knowingly enters a residence, or stays at a residence without the resident’s permission, they are guilty of criminal trespass to a residence. This charge does not require that any theft attempt be committed. Punishment for a criminal trespass to a residence conviction can be either a Class A misdemeanor or a Class 4 felony. For a Class A misdemeanor, jail time may be up to one year. If the charge is a Class 4 felony, there is a possible jail time of one to three years. Court supervision and probation may be available as alternatives.

A Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help

Burglary charges are taken very seriously in Illinois, therefore those facing burglary related charges need the help of a qualified Chicago area criminal defense attorney. Call 312-629-0669 today to learn more about how the team at the Law Offices of Hal M. Garfinkel LLC, Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney can help you.


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