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Louisiana felonies: What is burglary?

Do you have to steal anything to be charged with burglary? Not necessarily. Burglary is one of those Louisiana felonies that tends to confuse people. First, the terms burglary and robbery are often used interchangeably, but they are two distinct crimes. This article focuses on burglary.

If you enter into a residence, commercial building or other structure without a lawful reason to do so, you could be charged with burglary. Even if you do not break a window, door or other mechanism to enter into the structure, you may still be "breaking" into it. This is because the legal definition of breaking does not require a violent entry. If you simply push or pull open a door to a structure you are not supposed to be in, you could face burglary charges.

In addition, you do not have to put your whole body inside the structure either. A hand, foot or your head could be enough to break the plane and get you into trouble. Frankly, you do not even have to steal anything. The circumstances will dictate what level of felony you will face.

As with other Louisiana felonies, your conviction for burglary of any degree is not guaranteed. Prosecutors will still need to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. Before that can happen, you retain the right to challenge the charges and the evidence. With the appropriate help, you may explore the options you may have for resolving the charges in a way that best suits your interests and needs.

Source:, "Types of Theft: The Difference Between Burglary vs Robbery?", Jen Stroh, Accessed on Aug. 27, 2017

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