Wondering what the difference is between burglary 3rd-degree and 2nd-degree? The answer is here in this article. But first, we’ll review what the three degrees of burglary are. We’ll also define burglary for you.

In simplest terms, burglary is the action of entering a building or area unlawfully, without consent of any kind, with the intent to commit a crime. Many people automatically think that a burglar steals items, however, it is a term that indicates the perpetrator either:

  • stole something not belonging to them
  • assaulted someone
  • committed credit card fraud

Each of the above crimes holds its own punishment. When it comes to the punishment for burglary itself, it depends on a few factors. Read on to learn about the different degrees of burglary and what you can do to protect yourself, your family, and your home or business from falling victim to burglary.

One burglary happen every 22.6 seconds in the U.S.

First-Degree Burglary

First-degree burglary is the highest degree possible of this crime. It also gets the harshest punishment by law for all categories of burglary. In many cases, this is a minimum of fifteen years in prison. There is a combination of possible actions the person needs to have taken to constitute a first-degree burglary including:

  • The burglar was armed
  • The perpetrator caused harm or injury to another person or the property
  • The perpetrator used, threatened to use, or displayed a weapon
  • The incident happened while the residence was occupied

A burglar wearing black is looking into a home's glass patio door.

Second-Degree Burglary

Second-degree burglary has a different scent of possible scenarios from a first-degree incident.

The main difference between first and second-degree burglary is the structure used to gain entrance. First-degree burglary occurs when someone enters a home, while second-degree burglary is when the perpetrator illegally enters a building, such as an office, shed, car, etc. A perpetrator will face about 10 years in prison if they are convicted of second-degree burglary. A second-degree burglary requires that one or more of the following actions take place:

  • The burglar was armed
  • The perpetrator injured a victim on the commercial property
  • The burglar used, threatened the use, or displayed of a weapon
  • The perpetrator has prior records of burglary

Third-Degree Burglary

When someone commits burglary 3rd-degree, they can receive a maximum sentencing of about seven years in prison. In some instances, third degree burglary is downgraded to unlawful entry, which is a misdemeanor. Unlawful entry means that the perpetrator only entered a location without having consent.

Third-degree burglary is usually when someone enters an establishment with the intent to commit a crime. During the crime, they do not cause injury to another person. Burglary 3rd-degree may be committed during daytime hours rather than at nighttime. It usually happens when no one is in an establishment as well.

A large flat-screen television is sitting at the center of a cream-colored entertainment center.

Protect Your Home Or Business

It’s important to take the necessary steps to protect your home or business against the possibility of burglary. This means you need to be proactive in how you approach the safeguards you have in place. Most homes and businesses have security options in place, but there is always more you can do to protect your surroundings. This includes:

  • Assessing the property to determine areas that need improvements
  • Creating a plan for the people inside a building in case a burglary takes place
  • Installing security features to protect building inhabitants at all times

You can conduct an assessment by walking around the inside and outside of a home or business. Look for areas where a breach of security is high. Anyone inhabiting a home or working at an office building to ensure you get a wide range of views.

After finishing the assessment, it’s time to put a plan into place that can keep those inside safe. This means each person using a building needs to know where to go if a burglary occurs. They need to know how to react so those inside or near the building remain as safe as possible. Write down this plan so that all people in a home or business know their role in protecting everyone around them.

Installation of security features greatly decreases the possibility of a break-in. There are several options available available when it comes to securing a home or business. This includes:

  • Keeping cameras around or inside the property
  • Installing a security alarm system to alert authorities when a breach occurs
  • Using motion-activated lighting systems
  • Practicing tactics to divert perpetrators away from a property altogether

Let Protect America Help

Homes with a security system are 33% less likely to be broken into. Protect the exterior and interior of your home with award-winning security equipment from Protect America. When you join our family, you have the freedom to customize your security packages with only the monitoring equipment you want for your home. Our guided self-installation gives you complete control over your security and lets you make the commands on where you want the products in your home.

And with 24/7 professional monitoring included, you can have peace of mind knowing your loved ones are protected around-the-clock. Contact us today for a free quote.