No one likes to be charged with a crime, regardless of how big or small the crime is, or how serious it can get. There are so many things at stake when facing a criminal charge. Including having a criminal record, jail time, loss of friendship and relationship, and unemployment, among others. Unlike some legal issues that can be resolved personally, a criminal arrest would most likely require you to get in touch with a criminal defence lawyer.
Having a lawyer makes a difference as your rights are protected and a positive outcome is expected. You can weigh your options, including plea bargains, trial expectations, available defences, and criminal charges filed. Before proceeding, let’s find out what felony theft means.
What Is Felony Theft?
Felony theft is defined as the unlawful acquisition of a person’s property against his or her will. With the intent to permanently deny such individuals access to their property. Theft is a general term used for various crimes. This includes larceny, shoplifting products, robbery, embezzlement, grand theft, grand theft auto, and the receipt of stolen property.
Can theft be a felony? Or a misdemeanour? The value of the stolen property can determine if a crime is a felony or not. For example, if the state law where you reside sets out stolen items worth more than $1,500 to be a felony. If you steal a piece of jewellery worth $1,700, such theft is considered to be a felony.
Finding A Theft Criminal Defense Lawyer
Felony is a serious criminal offence that bags severe penalties for offenders. It is advised that people charged with this offence hire an experienced theft criminal defense lawyer to increase the success rate of such charges dismissed. Having a public defender can also get you the same result.
A defence lawyer plays an exceptional role in evaluating the strength of the case presented by the prosecutor and creating a strategy to defend the client against such charges. He or she can assert a defence, negotiate a plea deal and represent the client’s interest during the trial.
Felony Theft Penalties
During the trial, the prosecutor has to prove that you committed theft – this is before the penalty phase trial. Depending on the state’s laws and the type of crime committed, some elements are tenable in court.
- The prosecutor has to prove that you (the defendant) intentionally took property
- The property in question was someone else’s.
- The real owner did not grant permission or consent to this act
- The defendant had the intention to permanently deprive the owner of his or her property
If the defendant is found guilty at the end of the trial, he or she will be given a sentence. Possible penalties the latter depending on the type of crime, criminal history, the value of the stolen property, and other factors. Such an individual may face prison time (state or federal), ranging from a year up to 10 years. Penalties may also include steep fines or restitution, or both.