So, you’ve stolen something or been accused of stealing something. Maybe you shoplifted as a joke with some friends, stole something from your neighbor, or jumped in a running car and took off with it. (Or, someone claims you did one of those things.) Though all of these offenses can be categorized as “theft,” the type of theft it is (and, therefore, the penalties associated with it) can vary depending on the value of the stolen item—or even who it was stolen from. Regardless of how it is categorized, you will need a good attorney on your side to defend against the charges.
Degrees of Theft
Theft charges can be filed as misdemeanors or felonies. Generally speaking, theft is a misdemeanor (sometimes also called “petty theft”) if the stolen item is worth less than $1,000. A theft will qualify as a felony if it involves significant amounts of money, forgery, checks, credit cards, automobiles, drugs, or firearms. There are five degrees of felony charges, each defined by the value of the item(s) stolen and/or the victims of theft; as the value of the item increases, so do the penalties for the crime.
The penalties can also be more severe depending on the victim of the crime. If the victim is elderly, disabled, an active duty service member, or the spouse of an active duty service member, it will qualify as a felony. In such an instance, you clearly need the representation of an experienced criminal defense attorney, such as those available at Dungan & LeFevre.
Our Attorneys Can Help
If you have received charges or are being investigated for a theft of any variety, whether it is a petty theft (misdemeanor) or a grand theft (felony), it is very important to hire a skilled defense attorney as quickly as possible so as to be properly represented either during the investigation or in court.
If you have been charged with a crime anywhere in the Miami Valley, please contact us for a consultation. Our experienced attorneys Jack Hemm, Steven Justice, and Michael Rice are experienced in these matters, and they’re standing by to help.