James K. Minick

James K. Minick

Breaking or entering into a vehicle is an offense similar to breaking and entering into a building or occupied structure. Since this offense revolves around the unauthorized entry into another person’s vehicle to commit a felony, the law grades this offense relatively harshly. The law takes this stance to discourage individuals from engaging in this activity, which poses a risk to public safety and a peaceful society.

The following crimes list out each of the required elements of the offense and the potential punishments an individual faces upon conviction. Additionally, the State must prove each element beyond a reasonable doubt in order to obtain a conviction.

Breaking or Entering a Vehicle

Elements

A person is guilty if they:

  1. Break or enter
  2. Without consent
  3. Any railroad car, motor vehicle, trailer, aircraft, boat, or other watercraft
  4. Containing goods, wares, freight, or anything of value
  5. With the intent to commit any felony or larceny therein

Punishment

If a person is guilty of breaking or entering a vehicle, they are guilty of a Class I felony under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-56.

Preparing to Break or Enter a Motor Vehicle

Elements

A person is guilty if they:

  1. Possess any motor vehicle master key, manipulative key, or other motor vehicle lock-picking device or hot wiring device
  2. With the intent to commit any felony, larceny, or unauthorized use of a motor propelled conveyance

Punishment

If a person is guilty of preparing to break or enter a motor vehicle, they are guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-56.4(d). A second violation is a Class I felony under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-56.4(d).

Possessing a Key or Device

Elements

A person is guilty if they:

  1. Possess any motor vehicle master key, manipulative key, or other motor vehicle lock-picking device or hot wiring device
  2. With the intent to commit any felony, larceny, or unauthorized use of a motor propelled conveyance

Punishment

If a person is guilty of possessing a key or device, they are guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-56.4(d). A second violation is a Class I felony under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-56.4(d).

Buying, Selling, or Transferring a Key or Device

Elements

A person is guilty if they:

  1. Willfully
  2. Buy, sell, or transfer a motor vehicle master key, manipulative key or device, key-cutting device, lock pick or lock-picking device, or hot wiring device, designed to open or capable of opening the door or trunk of any motor vehicle or of starting the engine of a motor vehicle
  3. For use in any manner prohibited by the above offense “Possessing a Key or Device”

Punishment

If a person is guilty of buying, selling, or transferring a key or device, they are guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor under N.C Gen. Stat. § 14-56.4(d). A second violation is a Class 1 felony under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-56.4(d).

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