Under Oregon law a person commits the crime of burglary when they: 1) Enter or remain unlawfully in a building or residence, 2) with the intent to commit a crime therein. Most people think of burglary as breaking into a building for the purpose of stealing something. However burglary under Oregon law covers a much wider range of conduct. Unlawful entry cases arise when a person enters premises without the consent or authorization of the owner. A person remains unlawfully when, after entering with permission, they fail to leave after such permission expires or is revoked. It is often said that in either case, an unlawful entry or an unlawful remaining, that a burglary conviction requires a criminal trespass for the purpose of committing a crime. What then is required for criminal trespass you might ask? Confusingly Oregon law defines criminal trespass as (did you guess it?) to "enter or remain unlawfully." It is this circular definition that is at the heart of much of the burglary confusion.
In an appellate out of juvenile court today the Oregon court of Appeals overturned a court's finding that a child had committed the offense of Burglary in the Second Degree. Burglary in the Second Degree is committed when a person enters or remains unlawfully in a building with the intent to commit a crime therein. A person enters unlawfully when go into the building without legal authorization. A person remains unlawfully when, after entering lawfully, they remain after their authorization has expired or been revoked.
Oregon's laws are clear -- and strict -- when it comes to punishing criminal offenses. Being accused of state crimes can lead to prison and a permanently damaged reputation.
A federal judge sentenced a 20-year-old man to prison on Jan. 27 for six and a half years after he plead guilty to participation in a number of burglaries. The defendant had acquired the nickname "Barefoot Bandit" because he often went shoeless while engaging in his crime spree as a teenage runaway. His string of crimes allegedly took place over a two year period.