Is it illegal to possess certain tools in Florida?

In Florida, there is a crime called “Possession of Burglary Tools“. This is a third degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison. “Burglary tools” could be lock picks, a crow bar, or even a hammer. It is not enough just to have these tools in your pocket. In order to be convicted of this crime in Florida, the prosecutor must prove that you intended to commit a burglary, you had in your possession a tool that you intended to use in the commission of a burglary, and you did some overt act toward the commission of the burglary.

In Florida, “burglary” is when you enter or remain in a dwelling, structure, or a conveyance (automobile) with the intent to commit an offense therein. Many people think that you have to “break” something in order to be arrested for burglary. Not so. You can touch the outside of a building with the intent to commit a crime inside and that can be considered a burglary. If you enter someone’s garage with the intent to commit a crime and eventually leave, you can still be arrested for burglary to a dwelling in Florida.

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