Theft crimes continue to be some of the most commonly committed offenses in the Bay Area. By legal definition, theft refers to the unlawful act of intentionally taking or using another person's property without permission. Accepting property that is known to be stolen is also a form of theft. If you have been accused of theft, it's important to retain the services of an experienced defense attorney. Charges of theft have the potential to bring out the kind of life-changing penalties that could leave you at a terrible disadvantage for the rest of your life.
Types of Theft Charges in California
When a person commits an act of theft, he or she will either be charged with petty theft or grand theft. A person will face petty theft charges, a misdemeanor offense, when the total value of the stolen goods is less than $400. Grand theft, which is a much more serious felony offense, will be charged when the value of the stolen goods is more than $400.
Attorney Lynn Gorelick offers defense representation to clients facing petty or grand theft charges for the following crimes in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties:
- Robbery/Armed Robbery
- Auto Theft
- Identity Theft
- Credit Card Theft
Theft and theft related criminal penalties in California
If you are convicted on theft charges, your penalties will depend largely on the type of offense you committed. Petty theft convictions typically result in no more than one year in jail, no more than $1,000 in fines, community service, probation, restitution, a mark on your permanent record, and more. In cases of grand theft, you will be sentenced to an enhancement of these penalties, meaning much larger fines, no less than one year in state prison, more hours of community service, a higher amount in restitution, etc.In many theft crimes cases, it is often possible to have your charges reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor, and there is also the possibility in some cases of participating in a theft diversion program. In exchange for the successful completion of a theft diversion program, the judge will dismiss or drop your charges.
Protect your rights when charged with Theft in the Bay Area
If you face a theft or related charge in Alameda County, Contra Costa County or elsewhere in the Bay Area, Attorney Lynn Gorelick will review your options with you for free and give you an assessment of your case and how she and her firm can help. Contact her at 510-785-1444 to schedule your meeting.