Clearwater Theft Crime Lawyer
Theft crimes cover a wide range of activities, with penalties ranging from small fines to decades in prison. Even a conviction for a “minor” misdemeanor, however, can carry significant consequences, limiting where you can work, what professional licenses you can hold, and even whether you can stay in the country if you are a noncitizen. If you’ve been charged with a theft crime in Clearwater, St. Petersburg, New Port Richey, Tampa or anywhere in the Tampa Bay Area, you need immediate assistance from a dedicated and effective Tampa Bay criminal defense lawyer. A Clearwater theft crime lawyer at King Law Group is here to help.
Defining Theft in Florida
In general terms, a person commits theft if they knowingly steal or attempt to steal someone else’s property. There are a number of different types and variations of theft that depend on the circumstances involved.
The severity of the charges depends on a number of factors, including the means used to deprive the other person of the property, the nature of the person or entity who owned the property, and, most importantly, the value of the property stolen.
Petit theft occurs when someone steals or attempts to steal something that doesn’t belong to them that is valued at less than $750. Shoplifting, for example, is typically charged as petit theft.
For property worth $100 and $750, the charge is first-degree misdemeanor petit theft, punishable by up to a year in jail and up to $1,000 in fines. If the property is worth less than $100, the defendant will be charged with second-degree misdemeanor petit theft, punishable by up to 60 days in jail and up to $500 in fines. Certain exceptions apply, such as if the property was stolen from a home.
While most instances of petit theft are misdemeanors, there is one notable exception. If the person has two or more prior convictions for theft, any subsequent arrest for petit theft may be charged as a third-degree felony. A felony petit theft is punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Grand theft, often called grand larceny in other states, refers to the theft of property worth more than $750. Grand theft is a felony. Third-degree felony grand theft is when the property stolen is worth between $750 and $19,999, and it is punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine. Second-degree felony grand theft applies when the property stolen is worth between $20,000 and $99,999; it is punishable by up to 15 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. First-degree felony grand theft applies when the value of the property stolen is at least $100,000 and is punishable by up to 30 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
Stealing certain types of property or stealing from certain people could also result in an enhanced charge. For example, theft of at least $300 in emergency medical equipment or law enforcement equipment is punishable as felony grand theft. Talk to a knowledgeable Florida theft crimes defense attorney to understand the charges to which you might be subject based on the allegations in your case.
Burglary & Robbery
Burglary and robbery are special types of theft that carry heavier penalties due to the means used and/or the nature of the location from which the property was taken. Robbery refers to theft from a person directly through the use of force or violence, or through threats putting the person in fear of violence. Force is broadly defined and could even include stealing an item out of person’s hand, even if no other force or threats are used. Robbery is a felony offense, the degree of which varies depending on other factors, such as, the amount of force and whether a weapon was used.
Burglary refers to entering a dwelling, structure or vehicle with the intent to commit a crime within. The offense intended to be committed within could be any crime, although theft is the most common underlying offense connected to burglary. Similar to Robbery, Burglary may be punished more severely depending on certain factors, such as, the location of the burglary, whether a weapon was used, and whether there was another crime committed within the dwelling, structure or vehicle.
White-Collar Theft Crimes
White-collar crimes broadly refer to financial crimes committed by business and government professionals. There are a number of white-collar theft crimes, including embezzlement, insurance fraud, misuse of corporate property, fraudulent accounting, credit card fraud, and other business activities aimed at depriving people of their money or property.
Call for Seasoned Legal Help After an Arrest for Theft in Clearwater or Tampa Bay
If you’ve been arrested for robbery, burglary, theft, grand larceny, or other theft crimes in the Tampa Bay Area, you need a trusted legal advisor in your corner as soon as possible. An experienced Clearwater theft crime defense lawyer at King Law Group is ready to hear your case. We make sure you know your rights, your options, and how to build the strongest defense. At King Law Group, we pride ourselves on providing honest, up-front, and individualized service to each of our clients. Your case matters to us, and we’ll be with you every step of the way until we obtain the best resolution possible for your criminal matter. If you’ve been arrested or charged with a theft crime in Clearwater, St. Petersburg, New Port Richey, Tampa or anywhere in the Tampa Bay Area, call Clearwater defense law firm King Law Group today for a free consultation.