NYC Criminal Trespass Lawyers
If you are charged with criminal trespass, then it will be considered either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the nature of the incident and other actions that were involved when the crime was committed. Most misdemeanor trespass charges have a sentence of up to one year in jail attached to them. However, your attorney can sometimes enter a plea deal or challenge the charges to show that you had permission to be on the property. This would sometimes mean that your charges are reduced or you receive a lesser sentence. However, a felony criminal trespass charge often results in a sentence of over a year in prison.
In order to be charged with criminal trespass, you have to knowingly enter someone else’s property without that person’s permission. The reasons behind entering the property and whether any kind of weapon was used during the trespass will often have an impact your sentence and whether the charge is a misdemeanor or a felony. Trespass becomes a burglary charge if you planned to commit or actually committed another crime while on the property.
There are different degrees of criminal trespass that you need to think about before going to court so that you’re prepared for the sentencing phase. Your attorney can look at the evidence against you to try to have your charges reduced depending on whether anything was taken from the property or whether you knew or didn’t know that you were supposed to be on the property. Third-degree trespass is considered a misdemeanor and is punishable by up to a year in prison. However, most people convicted of this crime spend about three months in jail and pay fines of about $500. Elements of third-degree trespass include the property being a school, a home in a housing project, property of another person, or property that is enclosed.
Second-degree trespass is also considered a misdemeanor, but there are a few other components involved that could result in a longer time in jail and higher fines. This trespass charge involves entering the property of someone else and knowing that you were not supposed to be there. An example would be if an ex-spouse told you not to enter the property and you decided to go to the home anyway. Sentencing could result in up to a year in prison and fines that are usually about $1,000. You could also be put on probation when you are released from prison. First-degree trespass is considered a felony. This crime involves entering and staying on someone’s property after being told to leave. It can also involve a weapon or know that someone else who is committing the crime with you has a weapon. First-degree trespass also involves entering a public building or property that is open to other people.
Although criminal trespass might not seem like a big issue if you are charged with a misdemeanor, it can still reflect negatively on your background. Consult with an attorney who can assist you in showing any proof that you had permission to be on the property or that you were not the one who was on the property in the first place.