Definition of break-in in English:



  • An illegal forced entry of a building or vehicle, typically to steal something.

    ‘police are investigating a break-in at a house’
    • ‘The shopkeepers also say the buildings have become easier targets for break-ins and vandalism.’
    • ‘Police are warning boat owners to take extra care following a recent series of break-ins and thefts from boats.’
    • ‘There appeared to be no sign of a break-in or burglary, and cash was found in the house and on the body.’
    • ‘My old Columbia House Requiem was stolen in a break-in a long time ago, and I forgot to replace it.’
    • ‘Other country crime includes farm break-ins, theft from building sites and the theft of valuable horse tack from stables.’
    • ‘Since the car guards have been introduced, the rate of car thefts and break-ins has been substantially reduced.’
    • ‘The incidence of vehicle break-ins at parking areas is nothing new and not much worse than 10 years ago.’
    • ‘Vehicle crime, such as car break-ins and motor theft has been reduced by 47.6 per cent.’
    • ‘They say there has been a spate of break-ins to parked vehicles in their area, which takes in a wide area from Pewsey to Netheravon.’
    • ‘The most common crime is theft, especially car break-ins and automobile theft.’
    • ‘There, the officer knew that there had been a break-in of a building, but nothing more.’
    • ‘Police are warning car owners in Trawden to be on their guard following a spate of vehicle break-ins.’
    • ‘Christmas is also a busy time for burglars with 38,000 break-ins over the festive season in 2000.’
    • ‘Vehicle break-ins have been rife in the area in recent months, with thefts from cars and of the cars themselves becoming a serious problem.’
    • ‘This will no doubt prompt burglars to begin break-ins by stealing the security camera.’
    • ‘The house was unoccupied at the time of the break-in and the burglars gained entry by forcing open the front door.’
    • ‘Also stolen in the Mitchell break-in were coins, a gold bracelet and an electric shaver.’
    • ‘Some of the 10 arrests were linked to vehicle break-ins outside Spotland.’
    • ‘There have been constant break-ins at the building since Patrick bought it two years ago and now he hopes to make it secure.’
    • ‘Business owners in Darwen have been warned to be on their guard after a spate of break-ins where burglars removed skylights and windows.’
    burglary, robbery, theft
    View synonyms