Definitions from Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition and Ballentine's Law Dictionary as are available for each term in each dictionary.
  • Ballentine's Law Dictionary

    The removal of any protection against intrusion for the purpose of effecting an unlawful entry. See 7 Am. Rep. 556.

  • Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition

    Forcibly separating, parting, disintegrating or piercing any solid substance. In the law as to housebreaking and burglary, it means the tearing away or removal of any part of a house or of the locks, latches or other fastenings intended to secure it or otherwise exerting force to gain an entrance, with the intent to commit a felony; or violently or forcibly breaking out of a house, after having unlawfully entered it, in the attempt to escape. Gaddie v. Com., 117 Ky. 468, 78 S. W. 163, 111 Am. St. Rep. 259; Sims v. State, 136 Ind. 358, 36 N. E. 278; Melton v. State, 24 Tex. App. 287, 6 S. W. 303; Mathews v. Sinte, 36 Tex. 675; Carter v. Sinte, 68 Ala. 98; State v. Newbegin, 25 Me. 503; McCo.urt v. People, 64 N. Y. 585. In the law of burglary, "constructive" breaking, as distinguished from actual, forcible breaking, may be classed under the following heads:
    (1) Entries obtained by threats;
    (2) when, in consequence of violence done or threatened in order to obtain entry, the owner, with a view more effectually to repel it, opens the door and sallies out and the felon enters;
    (3) when entrance is obtnined by procuring the service of some intermediate person, such as a servant, to remove the fastening;
    (4) when some process of law is fraudulently resorted to for the purpose of obtaining an entrance;
    (5) when some trick is resorted to to induce the owner to remove the fastenings and open the door. State v. Henry, 31 N. O. 468; Clarke v. Com., 25 Grat. (Va.) 912; Ducher v. State, 18 Ohio, 317; Johnston v. Co.m., 85 Pa. 64, 27 Am. Rep. 622; Nicholls v. State, 68 Wis. 416, 32 N. W. 543, 60 Am. Rep. 870.
    —Breaking a case. The expression by the judges of a court, to one another, of their views of a case, in order to ascertain 'how far they are agreed, and as preliminary to the formal delivery of their opinions. "We are breaking the case, that we may show what is in doubt with any of us." Holt, C. J., addressing Dol-bin, J., 1 Show. 423.
    —Breaking bulk. The offense committed by a bailee (particularly a carrier) in opening or unpacking the chest, parcel, or case containing goods intrusted to his care, and removing the goods and converting them to his own use.
    —Breaking doors. Forcibly removing the fastenings of a house, so that a person may enter.
    —Breaking jail. The act of a prisoner in effecting his escape from a place of lawful confinement. Escape, while denoting the offense of the prisoner in unlawfully leaving the jail, may also connote the fault or negligence of the sheriff or keeper, and hence is of wider significance than "breaking jail" or "prison-breach."Breaking of arrestment. In Scotch law. The contempt of the law committed by an arrestee who disregards the arrestment used in his hands, and pays the sum or delivers the goods arrested to the debtor The breaker is liable to the arrester in damages. See Arrestment.