If you have been accused of stealing, you need to hire an Orange County theft crime lawyer who could protect your rights and help you achieve a favorable outcome. Failing to retain the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney could increase the chances of a negative outcome. Our team at The Law Offices of Scott D. Henry could be here to listen to your side of the story and provide you with superior legal advice.

We could begin investigating your case by reviewing the police proceedings leading up to and during the arrest. Our team would consider the evidence and could pursue all possible defense strategies. Our leading criminal defense attorneys could seek to negotiate a favorable agreement with the district attorney’s office before you step in court.

What is Considered Theft in Orange County?

California Penal Code 484 PC states that anyone who carries or steals, takes, leads, or drives away someone else’s personal property is guilty of theft. According to the penal code, theft may also include:

  • The fraudulent appropriation of property entrusted to you
  • Defrauding anyone of money, personal capital or labor
  • Accessing credit
  • Gaining access to someone’s property or monetary funds

Some specific examples of these offenses include:

  • Robbery
  • Burglary
  • Identity Theft
  • Auto Theft
  • Shoplifting
  • Embezzlement
  • Fraud

Petty Theft

Penal Code 484 PC defines the crime of petty theft as wrongfully taking another individual’s property when it’s value is $950 or less. If the value is over $950.00, then the more serious crime of grand theft can be charged. Stealing by larceny, false pretense, and embezzlement can also be considered petty theft.

Law enforcement officials typically charges this offense as a misdemeanor. Penalties for a conviction may include up to 6 months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. A conviction may negatively impact an individual’s immigration status if he or she is not a US citizen, but it will not affect their gun rights. Additionally, a this type of conviction can be expunged after completing the terms of the conviction. If you have been charged with petty theft, one of our local attorneys could help you through the legal process.

Grand Theft

Penal Code 487 PC defines the crime of grand theft as unlawfully taking another individual’s property when the property is valued at $950.00 or more. If the property is valued at less than $950.00, the lesser charge of petty theft can be charged. Stealing by larceny, false pretense, trickery, and embezzlement may also be considered grand theft.

Grand theft can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony. A misdemeanor conviction penalty can include up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. Penalties for a felony conviction can include up to three years in jail and a fine of up to $10,000.

Theft Crime Defenses

Stealing is considered a serious offense. Fortunately, there are some solid defenses your Orange County lawyer may pursue in a theft case. When an attorney determines the appropriate defense strategy, it typically depends on the specific circumstances. Some common defenses may result in lesser charges or possibly dropped charges. Some potential defenses may include:

  • Falsely accused
  • Claim of right – arguing that the property belonged to the defendant, or they believed it belonged to them
  • Consent – arguing that the defendant had, or believed to have, permission to take the property
  • Lack of intent – If someone took another person’s property but did not intend to. This is the most common defense for theft crimes because intent must be proven to get a conviction.

A skilled defense lawyer could thoroughly investigate a case’s specifics and implement the most effective strategy.

Contact an Orange County Theft Attorney Today

Our leading Orange County theft lawyers at the Law Office of Scott D. Henry have years of experience handling these cases with unparalleled success. If you have been charged or accused of stealing, we understand that you are in a dire and emotional situation. Now is the time to seek the advice and support of a skilled and aggressive defense attorney. Please contact our office today for a free consultation. We could discuss your case’s specifics, advise you of your rights, and determine the most effective strategy to help you fight for your freedom.

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