Have you been accused of embezzlement or fraud? Arrested for shoplifting? San Diego criminal defense attorney, Michael Hernandez, will not only investigate and examine information about your case, but also the circumstances surrounding the offense which may mitigate the penalties.
Theft is the unlawful taking of something that does not belong to you without the permission or consent of the owner. Whether the alleged offender acts out of desperation or as the result of emotional distress, such as depression or a compulsion, theft is often a crime of circumstance.
Theft-related Offences include:
- Petty Theft
- Grand Theft
- Petty Theft w/ Priors
- Commercial Burglary
- Identity Theft
- Residential Burglary
- Illegal Taking of a Vehicle
Theft violations can range from misdemeanor offenses to more serious felony offenses. Usually the degree and seriousness of the crime is determined by the value of the stolen item, as well as what was stolen and who it was stolen from.
The defining parameters of petty theft range from state to state but typically refer to incidences of theft in which the value of stolen property falls below the statutory amount. However, do not be fooled by the phrase petty theft as these offenses carry serious penalties
When the value of the stolen property exceeds $950 it is known as grand theft. In situations where the party accused is not represented by a skilled attorney, grand theft charges may result in much more serious consequences than that of petty theft.
Grand Theft Auto
Grand theft auto is the unlawful taking of a vehicle without the owner’s consent with the intent of permanently depriving the owner of the automobile. Grand theft auto is often referred to as a “wobbler” offense meaning it can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. The decision of how the charges are filed depends on certain circumstances such as how the vehicle was taken, the value of the car and the suspect’s prior criminal history. A grand theft auto conviction could deliver a lengthy jail sentence in addition to fines, probation and suspension of driving privileges.
A criminal record containing petty, grand, or auto theft can be detrimental to your reputation as well as your livelihood. Prior convictions of this nature could prevent you from gaining employment, renting a residence, procuring a loan or even something as simple as coaching youth sports.
By promptly contacting an attorney, your chances for building a successful defense will greatly increase and, in turn, so will your chances of avoiding more serious penalties (i.e. expensive fines, criminal record, potential incarceration). As your legal counsel, our job is to help you avoid prosecution whenever possible. Our experienced legal team will peruse ways to achieve dismissal of your theft charges or seek alternative resolutions which will help keep you out of jail or prison. In some cases, our team may negotiate civil restitution so that criminal charges may be avoided all together.