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Burglary Tools Laws (PC 466) in California

California Penal Code 466: Possession of Burglary Tools

Legal Definition: Every person having upon him or her in his or her possession a picklock, crow, keybit, crowbar, screwdriver, vise grip pliers, water-pump pliers, slidehammer, slim jim, tension bar, lock pick gun, tubular lock pick, bump key, floor-safe door puller, master key, ceramic or porcelain spark plug chips or pieces, or other instrument or tool with intent feloniously to break or enter into any building, railroad car, aircraft, or vessel, trailer coach, or vehicle as defined in the Vehicle Code, or who shall knowingly make or alter, or shall attempt to make or alter, any key or other instrument named above so that the same will fit or open the lock of a building, railroad car, aircraft, vessel, trailer coach, or vehicle as defined in the Vehicle Code, without being requested to do so by some person having the right to open the same, or who shall make, alter, or repair any instrument or thing, knowing or having reason to believe that it is intended to be used in committing a misdemeanor or felony, is guilty of a misdemeanor. Any of the structures mentioned in Section 459 shall be deemed to be a building within the meaning of this section.

What does this mean?

Clearly possession of these tools alone is not a crime. The idea is that you have the tools, with the intent to commit a burglary with those tools. You could possess every one of the burglary tools listed but unless you intend to use them in an unlawful manner, you cannot be found guilty under this section.


Possessing Burglary tools is a straight misdemeanor in California. If you are convicted under this section, you could be sentenced to up to 180 days in County Jail. You would also be required to pay fines and fees, as well as restitution. You would be put on probation for 3 years, where during that time period you cannot violate any law, or it will result in a Probation Violation.

Common Defenses

  1. Statute of Limitations
  2. Insufficient Evidence
  3. Violation of your Rights

Looks can be deceiving. For example, if you are parked outside of a closed store, wearing a hoodie, a mask, and gloves, it might look like you are ready to break into that closed store to steal. However, if that is all the police find on you, without any of the listed tools above, then you cannot be found guilty of possession of burglary tools.

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Facing charges like Attempted Burglary, particularly under PC 466 involving burglary tools, can have a more significant impact on your life than it might initially seem. Such charges, hinting at an intent to commit theft, can tarnish your reputation and adversely affect your professional prospects, beyond the immediate legal consequences of probation, fines, or jail time.

At Inland Empire Criminal Defense, our Ontario attorney specializing in PC 466 cases possesses extensive experience and a commendable track record in successfully defending against charges of Burglary Tools and other Burglary offenses. We understand the nuances of these charges and the importance of a strong defense strategy that not only addresses the legal aspects of your case but also considers its long-term impacts on your life.

We encourage you to take advantage of our free initial consultation. Our dedicated team is available around the clock to address any concerns or questions you might have regarding your case. We are committed to providing you with the highest level of legal representation, aiming to protect your rights and work towards the best possible outcome.

Contact Inland Empire Criminal Defense at 909-939-7126 for skilled and trustworthy legal assistance. Located in Ontario, CA, we are well-positioned to offer our expertise and support in these challenging times.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

Does the attorney offer confidential consultations?

Absolutely, Inland Empire Criminal Defense prioritizes your privacy and confidentiality. Every consultation with our attorney is conducted with the utmost discretion, ensuring your information remains secure and private.

Does the attorney offer payment plans?

Yes, understanding the financial pressures that can come with legal representation, our attorney offers flexible payment plans. This approach ensures that quality legal defense is accessible for all our clients in Riverside, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles Counties.

Is the consultation free?

Yes, Inland Empire Criminal Defense offers free consultations. This is part of our commitment to providing accessible and transparent legal services to residents of Riverside, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles Counties.

Are the consultations in person or only over the phone?

We offer both in-person and over-the-phone consultations to accommodate your preferences and needs. Whether you’re in Riverside, San Bernardino, or Los Angeles County, we ensure that you can access our legal services in the way that suits you best.

Is the office open on weekends?

Our office is typically closed on weekends. However, we do make exceptions for meetings by special arrangement. Our commitment is to be as accommodating as possible to meet the unique needs of our clients in Riverside, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles Counties.

Does the attorney serve all of California?

Our legal services are specifically tailored to residents of Riverside, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles Counties. For cases outside these areas, we recommend consulting to find appropriate legal assistance. Our focused approach allows us to provide specialized defense catering to the unique legal landscape of these counties.

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