San Diego Theft Crime Lawyer
Work with a Board Certified Criminal Defense Specialist
Depending upon the value of the item alleged to have been stolen, penalties could range from a fine to probation to a sentence of years in prison. At JD Law, we have the experience to defend those who facing misdemeanor or felony theft charges. Attorney James N. Dicks, with a background as a former police officer and narcotics investigator, heads up our criminal defense team.
Call now if you have been arrested for any of the following offenses:
Attorney Dicks is a board certified criminal law specialist, a distinction earned by those who have undertaken additional training to enhance their skills and augment their experience. We employ those abilities to seek out the best strategy for your defense and have a dedicated desire to provide you with the best defense possible, while zealously protecting your rights.
Request a free consultation to learn more about the defense services offered at JD Law!
Skilled Defense for Misdemeanor & Felony Theft Crimes
In addition to those listed above, theft crimes encompass white collar crimes such as accounting fraud, bank fraud, embezzlement, extortion, government fraud, and others. The penalties you could face for theft depend largely upon the type of theft described in your charge and the value of the goods or assets acquired through the crime. At the very least, conviction is likely to result in a fine.
Typical consequences for theft crimes are as follows:
- Less Than $50 Worth of Goods – A fine is often the only punishment for a first-time offense
- $950 or More Worth of Goods - A fine, jail sentencing for 16 months to 2 years, and more extensive penalties are generally reserved for large scale operations and grand theft of items
Petty & Grand Theft in San Diego, CA
The level of the charge, whether misdemeanor or felony grand theft, will be based upon the value of the items alleged to have been stolen. Per California Penal Code § 484 - 502.9, theft allows for various penalties to be imposed upon conviction. For those cases in which the value of the item is $950 or less, charges of petty theft are typically filed.
However, if the items in the case are a vehicle or firearm, the charge will be elevated to a felony. A misdemeanor charge is common in cases of shoplifting or similar crime when the value of the item is fairly low, but if the theft is alleged to involve the use of any weapon or violence against another person, the charges will be filed as a felony.
The penalties imposed by the court will be based upon several factors:
- The value of the items alleged to have been stolen
- The use of threat, force or violence in the crime
- The criminal record of the accused
- The use of a deadly weapon in commission of the theft
Penalties for Grand Theft & Petty Theft in California
Charges of petty theft can be filed when a person changes a price tag, is alleged to have taken money from an employer (embezzlement), or a case in which any fraudulent act was involved in the theft. This charge will be for lower value losses to another party through theft.
There are a great many ways a person could be caught in the justice system and charged with petty theft, including an error such as walking out of a store with an item inadvertently, borrowing something innocently, or other mistake. Nonetheless, criminal charges must be dealt with, as the penalties imposed and other consequences are actually quite severe.
For grand theft charges, the item in the case must be at a value of over $950, the case involves the alleged use of a firearm in the commission of the crime, or the item must have been stolen directly from another individual. Cases involving vehicles, even below the value of $950, are grand theft.
Felony grand theft carries heavy penalties, including:
- Up to 3 years in state prison
- Fines, varying with the seriousness of the case
Petty theft crimes can result in penalties that include:
- Up to $1,000 in fines
- Up to 6 months in jail
Some cases of grand theft are filed as grand theft by larceny. These are cases in which an item is taken from another person without permission and with the intent to permanently deprive them of this property, or when an item is taken and not returned for a significant period of time. Some shoplifting cases are filed as grand theft by larceny when the value of the item exceeds the $950 threshold.
San Diego Auto Theft Attorney
Auto theft, also referred to as grand theft auto, is often charged as a felony under California Penal Code, although it can be charged as a misdemeanor under California Vehicle Code. If charged as a felony, you will face a prison sentence of 16 months, 2 or 3 years, along with possible probation.
Factors such as the following will all affect sentencing:
- Prior auto theft convictions
- Your criminal record
- Circumstances of the theft crime
In any grand theft auto case, the prosecution must prove not only that you took a car, but that you took it with the intention of not returning it to the owner. They also must prove that the owner did not give consent for you to take or borrow the car. This gives your auto theft defense lawyer an opportunity to prove that you had no intention of keeping the car, or that the owner actually gave his or her consent. As in any criminal case, the prosecution must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, all of these things in order for you to be convicted. By working with San Diego criminal lawyer from JD Law, you have the chance to win your case or avoid charges being filed altogether.
Contact Us Today for Your Free Case Evaluation
When you work with JD Law, you can take a stand against your charges. If you are a first-time offender charged with misdemeanor theft, you may qualify for a diversion program instead of jail. Even if you are battling a felony charge or face the possibility of a consecutive conviction, one of our primary concerns is protecting your rights. No matter what the circumstances are surrounding your arrest for theft, our San Diego criminal defense lawyer is prepared to help you.
To discuss your legal options and your next step, contact our firm for a free consult.