Arrested for business burglary in Mississippi? Here’s what you need to know.
Business burglary is a felony under Mississippi criminal law. A person is guilty of business burglary if he or she:
(1) breaks and enters;
(2) any shop, store, booth, tent, warehouse, or other building or private room or office therein;
(3) in which any goods or valuable thing is kept;
(4) with the intent to steal therein, or to commit any felony.
Business burglary carries a maximum sentence of seven (7) years in prison.
One of the more common ways the State tries to prove the crime of business burglary is to show that the accused possessed property which was stolen during a business burglary. However, mere possession of stolen property, by itself, is insufficient to convict the accused of business burglary in Mississippi.
Where the State relies solely on the possession of stolen items as proof of business burglary, the following factors must be considered:
(a) How close to the scene of the business burglary was the accused arrested with the stolen property. The further away from the scene of the crime, the less weight possession of stolen property should be given;
(b) How long after the burglary was the accused arrested with the stolen items? The longer the period of time between the burglary and the arrest, the less weight this evidence should be given;
(c) Of all the items stolen in the business burglary, how many did the accused have in his possession. Obviously, the less items the accused had in his possession, the less weight the evidence should be given.
(d) Did the accused try to hide the items before or at the time he was arrested for business burglary;
(e) Whether the accused has a plausible explanation for why he was in possession of the property stolen during the business burglary.
All of these facts must be thoroughly investigated by the defense. For this reason, you need a criminal lawyer who will leave no rock unturned in finding facts that will keep you out of jail. And you need a Mississippi criminal defense lawyer who will fight hard to protect you. Please contact Jackson-based criminal defense lawyer Curt Crowley for a free consultation.