A theft crimes charge can be brought against you if you are accused of stealing something from another person. The court system in Lancaster treats theft crimes charges as either misdemeanors or felonies. Any theft crimes charge can lead to probation, fines, and time in prison or jail.
You can boost your chances for courtroom success by working with the experienced Lancaster theft crime lawyers of Simmrin Law Group. Securing skilled legal aid could mean the difference between success and failure for your case.
Get Help Handling a Theft Crime Charge in Lancaster
The state of California has several different charges that cover theft crimes. Some of these charges are almost always considered misdemeanors, including:
- Petty Theft
- Unlawful Taking of a Vehicle
There are also felony theft crime charges, such as:
- Grand Theft
- Grand Theft Auto
Felony charges are handled more severely by the court system, but even a misdemeanor can lead to incarceration and hefty fines. The laws surrounding theft crimes can be difficult to understand. Get a skilled Lancaster criminal defense lawyer in your corner to help you navigate the legal system.
Lancaster’s Petty and Grand Theft Charges
You could be charged with either petty or grand theft if you steal something from another person. Lancaster uses several charges for theft:
You can be convicted of petty theft if you steal something worth less than $950 without mugging or robbing someone. There are exceptions to these standards that will increase the severity of your charges.
There are many general actions that can be considered petty theft, including:
- Theft by Trick
- Theft by Fraud
Petty theft is considered a misdemeanor but it should not be taken lightly. Any of these actions can lead to fines of up to $1,000. You could also end up spending 6 months in jail and dealing with probation after you are released, if convicted.
Prosecutors can charge you with grand theft if you are accused of stealing more than $950, or if you are accused are stealing certain kinds of property, such as:
- Motor Vehicles
- Some Agricultural Products or Fish
Grand theft can be treated as a misdemeanor or a felony based on your case’s circumstances and history. A conviction for grand theft can lead to three years in prison and probation after you are released.
Vehicle Theft Charges in California
There are two specific charges that can be brought against you if you are accused of stealing a motor vehicle in Lancaster, CA.
Unlawful Taking of a Vehicle
An unlawful taking of a vehicle charge applies if you take the motor vehicle of someone else without securing their consent but while intending to eventually give it back. This charge does not apply if you intend to keep a vehicle permanently.
Unlawfully taking someone’s vehicle may result in fines of up to $5,000 and jail time of up to a year for a first offense. Note that if you are charged with unlawfully taking a vehicle more than once, this charge often becomes a felony and comes with harsher penalties.
Grand Theft Auto
Lancaster defines grand theft auto as the act of taking the motor vehicle of another person without intending to give it back. This is the more serious of the vehicular theft charges used in California. Grand theft auto is usually treated as a felony, which can lead to fines of $10,000 and potentially five years in jail if the stolen vehicle is worth more than $200,000.
Any conviction for a theft charge will have long-lasting effects on your future. Take steps to defend yourself by enlisting a skilled theft crimes lawyer who understands the ins and outs of the legal system in Lancaster.
Robbery Charges in Lancaster, CA
Robbery charges are generally the most severe of the theft crime charges used in California. Robbery involves taking someone’s property through the use of fear or threats while you are in their immediate presence. A person must also intend to keep the stolen property permanently for this action to count as robbery.
California utilizes two main charges to handle accusations of robbery:
First Degree Robbery
You can face first degree robbery charges if you are accused of robbing:
- Someone close to an ATM.
- Someone in a motor vehicle, such as a taxi or a bus.
This charge also applies to any robbery that occurred in a structure that was inhabited, like a home. First degree robbery is the more serious robbery charge. If you are convicted, you could face fines of $10,000 and you might spend up to 9 years in state prison.
Second Degree Robbery
Charges of second degree robbery are reserved for any robbery that does not meet the conditions to be considered first degree robbery. This can cover a wide range of situations. Lancaster treats second degree robbery as a less severe crime, but it can still lead to up to 5 years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.
Fight for Your Future with a Lancaster Theft Crimes Lawyer
Every one of the theft crime charges used in Lancaster can result in monetary penalties and incarceration. You can increase your chances of successfully beating these charges by working with the trained Lancaster theft crimes lawyers of the Simmrin Law Group. We have a record of beating Lancaster prosecutors and want to help you. Jump start your defense by contacting us for a FREE consultation. You can reach us by filling out the form on the right or calling (310) 997-4688.