Theft Lawyers in Jacksonville, Florida Protecting the Rights of Clients Facing Theft-Related Charges
Theft crimes involve the illegal taking of property that belongs to another person without permission or consent. In Florida, the penalties for theft can range from misdemeanors to felonies, depending on the value of the items stolen and other aggravating factors. Learn how theft crime charges work in Florida and why it is important to consult with an attorney if you are facing charges.
What Is Considered a Theft Crime in Florida?
Under Florida §812.014, theft is defined as an act where a person obtains or uses the property of another without the property owner’s consent or knowledge. The severity of the charge can vary depending on the property stolen and its value. Theft in Florida can take many forms, including fraud, extortion, forgery, bank robbery, grand larceny, and identity theft.
Florida severely punishes those who commit these crimes, with felony charges being applicable in some cases. Aggravated identity theft is particularly serious and can result in increased penalties for the offender. If you are facing charges for any type of theft crime, it is important to get help from an experienced criminal defense attorney. A qualified theft defense attorney will be able to explain your rights and provide you with the best possible legal defense.
What Are Some Common Examples of Theft Crimes?
Florida laws classify theft crimes into petit theft (petty theft) and grand theft. Petit theft is defined as the taking of property or services valued at $750 or less. Grand theft, on the other hand, is defined as the taking of property or services valued at more than $750. Shoplifting is one of the most common theft crimes committed in the state, and a person charged with shoplifting may face grand theft or petit theft charges, depending on the total value of the property taken.
Other types of theft crimes include embezzlement and employee theft, possessing altered or edited property, forging checks, altering a stolen item’s serial number, and creating counterfeit money. Burglary is another theft crime that involves entering an occupied structure with the intent of committing a crime.
What Are the Penalties for a Theft Crime in Florida?
Theft is a serious crime in Florida, and the penalties can vary depending on the value of the property stolen. If the stolen property is valued at under $100, the offender may be charged with second-degree petit theft, which is a misdemeanor with penalties that may include a fine and up to 60 days in jail.
If the property taken is valued between $100 and $300, the offender may be charged with first-degree petit theft, which is a more serious misdemeanor charge with penalties including up to one year in prison and as much as $1000 in fines.
If the value of the stolen property is greater than $300, the offender can be charged with Grand Theft, which is a felony. A person may commit first-degree grand theft if the stolen property is worth more than $100,000. First-degree grand theft can be punishable by up to 30 years in prison, up to 30 years of probation, and a fine of up to $10,000.
When the stolen property is valued at least $20,000 but less than $100,000, the offense can be considered second-degree grand theft, a second-degree felony in Florida that could result in a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison, 15 years of probation, and up to $10,000 in fines. If the stolen property is valued between $300 and $20,000, the offender may be charged with third-degree grand theft – a third-degree felony that could lead to a maximum of five years in prison, probation, and a fine of up to $5,000.
How Can a Theft Lawyer Help Me if I Am Facing Theft Charges?
To ensure that your rights are protected and to minimize the potential consequences of your case, it is recommended that you seek the advice of a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer. The Weldon Law Office has a team of skilled theft attorneys that can help you determine how best to proceed with your case. If you have been accused of a theft-related offense in Jacksonville, Florida, or surrounding areas, contact our office at 904-204-3420.