19 July 2004

Virginia Court of Appeals 07/13

Hitt v. Commonwealth - Subject: Can a bedroom within a house constitute a "dwelling house" for the purpose of the burglary statute?

Facts: Defendant had permission to be in a house. The bedroom was locked and the Defendant broke into it.

"The legislature intended to preserve the crime of common law burglary as an offense against habitation." The place of habitation is the house as a whole, not a bedroom in that house. The Legislature has chosen at times to extend the traditional common law notion of "dwelling house," but it has not extended it to encompass a room within a house.

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