Prince George County authorities arrested a man last week who is accused of burglarizing a home in Lanham on February 5, 2014. According to reports, the man allegedly broke into a home located in the 10000 block of Storch Drive. He made away with personal property from the home valued at approximately $700. The suspect is currently being held in the County Department of Corrections.
Officials had previously obtained an arrest warrant for the man on suspicion of first-degree burglary. Currently, however, the accused only has been charged with third-degree burglary and theft of less than $1,000. These lesser charges no doubt help his criminal defense.
The category of crimes that have come to be known as theft is actually larger than many people realize. While we know it is a crime to steal a candy bar from a supermarket, the nature of that offense is, to some degree, the same as demanding cash at gunpoint, as both involve a forcible taking of property owned by another person.
Prosecutors may use this fact to ramp up charges and seek convictions for more serious offenses, even when the actual offense is not that severe. It is important to know that the more severe the crime, the more severe the penalties can be. As a result, criminal defendants need to know the various crimes for which they can be charged. One simple mistake can open an accused up to the possibility of spending years in prison and paying thousands of dollars in fines.
Local Upper Marlboro criminal defense attorneys know these crimes and know the elements required for the prosecution to prove their case. They use this knowledge in plea negotiations to help the accused lessen the charges against them and reduce the potential penalties. Therefore, anyone charged with a crime should consider the value of challenging the allegations against them.
Source: WUSA 9, "Upper Marlboro burglar suspect arrested," Feb. 24, 2014