Different Kinds of Thefts

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What Are the Different Kinds of Thefts?

Basic theft can occur when one person takes the property of another person without their permission, with the intent of permanently depriving the owner of their use of the property. Under state criminal statues, there can be many different kinds of thefts besides petty theft or simple larceny. Some other kinds of thefts include:

Some kinds of thefts such as robbery involve an element of violence. These can often lead to stricter legal penalties than simple theft charges.

What Are the Penalties for Theft Crimes?

Penalties for petty theft and other smaller theft crimes usually involve a small fee and some possible jail time. They are usually classified as less serious misdemeanor crimes. On the other hand, violent theft crimes or thefts involving large amounts of money or property can lead to felony charges. Felony penalties often involve longer sentences in a prison facility, higher criminal fees, and other consequences such as probation periods.

Are Penalties Different for Repeat Offenses?

First-time petty theft offenses are sometimes remedied through alternative sentencing options such as a fine and/or community service work by the defendant. House arrest is also sometimes an option. Many first-time offenders are allowed to avoid jail time through such programs. A common example of this is with first-time shoplifting offenders who have stolen an item that is worth little value.

However, repeat offenses can lead to more serious penalties, even for less serious crimes. For instance, a second or third petty theft charge may result in a definite jail sentence combined with higher fines. Repeat felony offenses can lead to even longer sentences, as well as a loss of rights (such as a loss of the right to vote or the right to own a gun).

Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with Theft Charges?

As you can see, the penalties for a theft conviction can range from relatively minor consequences to more serious legal penalties. A qualified criminal law attorney can provide you with legal advice to help you with your case. Also, your attorney can provide you with guidance and representation throughout the duration of the criminal trial.

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Last Modified: 01-28-2014 03:54 PM PST

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