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Is commercial burglary a misdemeanor or a felony if food items were stolen equaling only 10 dollars?

Lancaster, CA |

if it was premeditated is it considered commercial burglary?

Attorney Answers 9

  1. Burglary is always a felony. It occurs when someone enters a structure to commit a crime therein. $10 or $100000000. It makes no difference on the burglary charge.

    If charged with burglary, you need a criminal defense attorney.

    In no way am I offering you legal advice, and in no way has my comment created an attorney-client relationship. You are not to rely upon my note above in any way, but insted need to sit down with counsel and share all relevant facts before receiving fully-informed legal advice. If you want to be completely sure of your rights, you must sit down with an experienced criminal defense attorney to be fully aware of your rights.

  2. It's a felony.

  3. Get an attorney. This matter might be able to get resolved. Without knowing more, it will probably be filed as a misdemeanor , or reduced to that because of the low value involved.


  4. It is a wobbler, likely to be filed as a misdemeanor. "Premeditated" in this context means that you entered the store with the intent to steal. If you didn't, it's just petty theft.

    No legal advice is given here. My responses to questions on Avvo are never intended as legal advice and must NOT be relied upon as if they were legal advice. I give legal advice ONLY in the course of a formal attorney-client relationship. Exchange of information through Avvo's Questions & Answers forum does not establish an attorney-client relationship with me. That relationship is established only by joint execution of a written agreement for legal services. I am only licensed in the States of California and New York and the District of Columbia

  5. A commercial burglary is a wobbler. Whether or not it is filed as a misdemeanor or felony is dependent on your prior record and the value of the items. Premeditation is not a legal consideration with regards to a commercial burglary.

  6. I've had similar matters and have been able to resolve them as infractions, like a parking ticket. A great deal will depend on the facts, your record, the prosecutor and the courthouse. Some courthouses are tougher than others. If this is in the Lancaster courthouse, then it will be very tough to get an infraction. Good luck.

    The response above is not intended as legal advice since it’s impracticable to provide thorough, accurate advice based upon the query without additional details. It is highly recommended that one should seek advice from a criminal defense attorney licensed in your jurisdiction by setting up a confidential meeting. Moreover, this response does not constitute the creation of an attorney-client relationship since this message is not a confidential communication because it was posted on a public website, thereby publicly disclosing the information, which is another reason to setup a confidential meeting with an attorney.

  7. The prosecutor can charge it as either a felony or a misdemeanor, but will probably go with a misdemeanor unless your criminal record pushes them toward a felony. This case MAY be a good candidate for settlement for an infraction due to the low value of the goods. Best to get an attorney, as your trying to do this yourself may end up doing more harm than good.

    California attorney Sarkis Jacob Babachanian handles criminal defense, personal injury, civil litigation and bankruptcy (ch. 7) matters in the greater Los Angeles area. To discuss possible representation, feel free to phone Mr. Babachanian at 818-500-0678 or email him at The information provided is as a public courtesy only and does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Only a formal written agreement establishes an attorney-client relationship. In criminal cases, speak with nobody except privately with an attorney about your case facts. In personal injury cases, all cases are governed by statutes of limitation which create deadlines to bring your case, and if you miss the deadline(s) you risk forever losing your rights.

  8. As others have mentioned, a commercial burglary is a second degree burglary and is a wobbler. It could be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony. The decision is in the hands of the prosecutor and they will consider the facts of the specific case and any other relevant factors (such as your criminal history). In this case, assuming it was a simple theft of a $10 item with few other factors and a clean criminal history, the odds are you're going to be charged with a misdemeanor.

    Nothing said here shall be construed as legal advice. I can not effectively advise about your case without knowing all the facts. Additionally, my response does not create an attorney-client relationship. You may contact me privately if you would like to discuss particular details of your case at

  9. Like others said it is a wobbler, meaning it can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony. Whether it is charged as a felony depends on your prior record and the conduct from the offense and how egregious it was. If it was premeditated, that just means you had the intent to steal before entering the store but it could still be charged as a misdemeanor.

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