Burglary of a Motor Vehicle

Over 65,000 cars and trucks are stolen every year in the state of Texas. Almost 200,000 are robbed annually. These statistics indicate how evident motor vehicle burglary is amongst the Texas population.

If a law enforcement officer believes you broke into or entered someone else’s automobile, chances are they will arrest you. Unfortunately, being charged with motor vehicle burglary can result in several consequences. Aside from jail time and hefty thousand-dollar fines, the situation can often be very stressful to navigate. That is why it’s necessary to have a credible motor vehicle burglary lawyer such as the ones at The Gracia Law Firm, P.C. to represent you.

Auto Burglary Lawyer in Brownsville, Texas

Have you been charged with a motor vehicle burglary offense? It’s important to work with a theft crime attorney who is proficient and committed to securing the best possible resolution for their client. Take action and consult our auto burglary lawyers at The Gracia Law Firm, P.C. .

Attorney Jonathan Gracia is dedicated to providing excellent legal representation to clients in Hidalgo County, Cameron County, and Willacy County. He is intimately familiar with Texas laws surrounding motor vehicle burglary and will work hard to achieve the best outcome possible for your case. Call us now at 956-504-2211 for a free, initial consultation.

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Information Center

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Understanding Texas Motor Vehicle Burglary Laws

Under the Texas Penal Code §30.04, an individual commits an automobile burglary if, without the consent of the owner, they break into or enter a car with the intention of committing a felony or theft. Burglary of a vehicle is classified as a Class A misdemeanor and can result in several consequences. A person charged with this crime may be faced with a $4,000 fine and up to one year in jail.

“Entering,” as defined under this law, means intruding with any part of the body or any physical object connected to the body. Essentially, person could be charged for this crime even if they are unable to fully break in the motor vehicle. Although the person may have never physically entered the vehicle, the individual may still face charges because they intruded with a part of their body.

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Burglary of a Motor Vehicle Penalties in Brownsville, Texas

Individuals convicted of this crime often face a serious of dreadful consequences. Penalties can range anywhere from hefty fees to jail time or both. Sentencing in these cases depends on whether the alleged offender has been previously convicted of this crime:

  • First Conviction – This is considered a Class A misdemeanor, as stated above. It is punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a $4,000 fine.
  • Second Conviction – 2nd conviction is also considered a Class A misdemeanor. It includes a punishment of at least 6 months to one year in jail and/or a $4,000 fine.
  • Third or Subsequent Conviction – This is a state jail felony punishable by at least 180 days in state jail and/or a fine up to $10,000.

The offender can also be charged with a state jail felony if the vehicle that was broken into or entered was a rail car, regardless of the number of times they were previously convicted.

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Other Motor Vehicle Burglary Laws in Texas

The state of Texas also punishes additional offenses related to vehicles, including failure to return a rental car and tampering with a vehicle identification number (VIN).

  • Tampering with a VIN: Tampering with a VIN occurs when an individual intentionally changes or removes the serial number from the vehicle. This is considered a class A misdemeanor and it is punishable by a fine of up to $4,000, one year or less in jail, or both.
  • Failing to return a rental car: This crime is generally prosecuted under Texas’s general “theft of service” statute. The punishment depends on the value of the stolen vehicle.

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Additional Resources

Texas Department of Motor Vehicles | Motor Vehicle Crime Prevention Authority – Visit this website to learn more about automobile burglary. The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles also shares tips to protect your vehicle, steps to take if your car is stolen, and more.

The Brownsville Police Department – The Brownsville Police Department offers an online reporting system that allows Texas citizens to submit a report concerning different crimes. These reports include arrest records on burglary, custody dispute, identity theft, lost property, repossession cases in Florida and more.

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Motor Vehicle Burglar Lawyer in Brownsville, Texas

If you or someone you know have been charged for committing automobile burglary in Brownsville or elsewhere in the state of Texas, reach out to a dedicated attorney for legal representation. The The Gracia Law Firm, P.C. knows what is at stake for those who are charged with this type of crime. Our attorneys will provide quality legal representation and work relentlessly to achieve best outcome possible for your case.

Please call 956-504-2211 to speak to motor vehicle burglary attorney Jonathan Gracia or one of his associate lawyers today. His team represents both residents and visitors in Willacy County, Hidalgo County, and Cameron County.

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