Home invasion in Massachusetts is a crime pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 265 Section 18C. The statute says that anyone who enters the home of someone else, either knowing or having reason to know that someone is home and remains in the home while armed with a dangerous weapon, and uses or threatens force upon someone in the home is guilty of home invasion.What Does the District Attorney Have to Show to Prove a Home Invasion Charge in Massachusetts?
To convict someone of home invasion in Massachusetts the district attorney prosecuting the case must prove four things beyond a reasonable doubt.
That you entered the dwelling place of someone else. Entering is satisfied once any part of the defendant's body, or any instrument or weapon controlled by the defendant enters the dwelling.
That you knew or should have known someone was home when you entered the property, or that you remained inside the property once you learned that someone was present. This element is somewhat difficult for prosecutors to prove in that many times people break into homes not knowing that someone was home or believing that someone was not home. For example, burglars who know that the property owners have two cars and wait for both cars to be off the premises and subsequently break into the property only to find someone there are not guilty of home invasion unless they stay in the home after learning of the person’s presence.
That you were armed at the time of entry. This requires the prosecutor to prove that you had in your possession a dangerous weapon. A dangerous weapon is any instrument that by nature of its construction or the manner of its use is capable of causing grievous bodily injury or death or would be perceived by a reasonable person as capable of such injury.
That you used or threatened the use of force on any of the occupants in the dwelling or that you intentionally caused injury to anyone in the property.
If you are convicted of the crime of home invasion there is a minimum sentence of 20 years in state prison and up to life in prison. There is a provision in the law that permits a judge to sentence someone convicted of home invasion to probation. That is often the case where there is another charge for which the defendant was convicted in addition to home invasion and the judge wants to avoid the harsh consequence of the home invasion conviction. Prosecutors use this a leverage in trying to force a plea to a lesser charge. You can avoid prison on a home invasion case by hiring the right lawyer to defend you.
The Law Offices of Stephen Neyman is a reputable Massachusetts Criminal Defense Law Firm with over 20 years of experience defending violent crimes such as home invasion. We have successfully defended home invasions and countless other crimes in Massachusetts and throughout the country. If you have been charged with a crime you need a criminal defense lawyer. Call our office at 617-263-6800 to discuss your case or contact us online.
Home Invasion Charges Dismissed
On January 21, 2014 members of the Harwich, Massachusetts police department responded to a call at 2:00 a.m. for a home invasion. A 911 caller reported that a man entered her home with a baseball bat and assaulted the occupants. The caller was interviewed by responding police officers. She reported that the man forcibly entered her home and pushed her out of his way. He had in his possession a bat and a metal pipe. One of the occupants recognized the assailant and identified him as the defendant. It was further reported that the defendant beat another occupant about his face with the metal pipe. The defendant was located and arrested. The weapons were found and identified by the victims. Today, Attorney Neyman was able to get this charge dismissed.
Charges of Home Invasion, Armed Burglary, Assault and Battery and Assault and Battery by Means of a Dangerous Weapon Dismissed
Marlborough District Court: On February 16, 2013 Marlborough, Massachusetts police officers responded to an apartment for a call that someone had broken into a home and assaulted its occupants. The occupants reported to the police that the defendant, a Sudbury, Massachusetts businessman had kicked in a window, entered the property, grabbed and punched the female occupant and chased the male occupant into the parking lot. The suspect fled and was apprehended nearby by the police. Charges of Home Invasion, Assault and Battery by Means of a Dangerous Weapon, Armed Burglar and more were filed. After a series of court appearances involving various pretrial motions Attorney Stephen Neyman succeeded in getting all charged dismissed.
Drug Distribution Charges Against Local Restaurant Manager Continued Without a Finding, School Zone Dismissed
Lowell District Court: On December 2, 2012 members of the Lowell, Massachusetts Department acting in an undercover capacity observed a vehicle being driven by the defendant being operated in an erratic manner. The officer pulled the car over and immediately smelled a strong odor of unburnt marijuana coming from the car. When they made contact with the operator, a local restaurant manager, they saw in plain view drug distribution paraphernalia. Specifically, the police saw packaging materials and a digital scale. The defendant was arrested and charged with Possession With Intent to Distribute narcotics and a Massachusetts School Zone Violation. Today, Attorney Neyman was able to get the School Zone Charges dismissed and the remaining Massachusetts Drug Charges continued without a finding. All charges will be dismissed shortly.