Any person who forcibly breaks into, or by the unauthorized use of a key or other instrument opens, any coin-or currency-operated machine with intent to steal any property or moneys therein shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor, but if such person has previously been convicted of violating this section, such person shall be punished as a Class I felon. The term "coin-or currency-operated machine" shall mean any coin-or currency-operated vending machine, pay telephone, telephone coin or currency receptacle, or other coin-or currency-activated machine or device.
There shall be posted on the machines referred to in G.S. 14-56.1 a decal stating that it is a crime to break into vending machines, and that a second offense is a felony. The absence of such a decal is not a defense to a prosecution for the crime described in this section. (1963, c. 814, s. 1; 1977, c. 723, ss. 1, 3; 1979, c. 760, s. 5; c. 767, s. 1; 1993, c. 539, ss. 27, 1153; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c).)