Reports out of Cherokee County describe car burglaries of up to 20 different vehicles. The vehicles were left unlocked according to authorities, and all were in the same neighborhood in Ackworth.
Deputies believe that three to four men went from house to house in the neighborhood looking for unlocked cars. Several items were taken out of the cars including cash, keys, and several weapons including a 9mm gun.
The suspected men were caught on surveillance videos, and cops are still on the lookout.
Entering Auto in Georgia
Entering Auto in Georgia is defined by Georgia Law in O.C.G.A. §16-8-18 as:
If any person shall enter any automobile or other motor vehicle with the intent to commit a theft or a felony, he shall be guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by imprisonment for no less than one nor more than five years, or in the discretion of the trial judge, as for a misdemeanor.
The penalty for entering auto is a prison sentence for no less than one year and no more than five years and is deemed a felony. However, it is within the judge's discretion to treat the crime as a misdemeanor instead.
If you are found guilty of a misdemeanor instead of a felony, you may only have to pay a fine. But if you judge issues a felony conviction, the consequences may be years in prison. You could receive a prison sentence, a fine, or both if guilty of a felony.
On top of criminal penalties, the convicted individual may be ordered by the court to pay restitution. Restitution is when someone convicted of a crime must financially compensate a victim or the victim's family. The amount of compensation varies with each case and is set by the court. Therefore, the penalty for a conviction of entering auto could be a prison sentence, restitution, and a fine.
Entering auto is very similar to burglary in Georgia except that the breaking and entering refers to automobiles instead of homes or buildings. Entering auto also shares similarities with different theft crimes in Georgia. Therefore, Georgia Criminal Defenses that apply to theft offenses can also apply and defend against a charge of entering auto.
If you or a loved one has been arrested, contact our offices today. A Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer can help you with your case now.