Individuals who steal another person’s motor vehicle can be charged with grand theft auto in Long Beach. Courts in California can sentence you to fines and jail time if you are convicted under a grand theft auto charge.
You can immediately improve your odds for beating this charge by contacting a professional grand theft auto lawyer in Long Beach. Trying to fight for your future on your own can leave you vulnerable to prosecutors who want to see you convicted.
Get ready to fight for your future by reaching out to the Simmrin Law Group today. Let our team go over the details about your case so you can get information about possible defenses to a grand theft auto charge.
Ensure You Understand Grand Theft Auto Charges
The state of California defines grand theft auto as the theft of someone else’s motor vehicle. The theft of almost any self-propelled vehicle can lead to grand theft auto charges, including:
You must intend to keep the vehicle you stole to be convicted of grand theft auto in Long Beach. The court does not draw distinctions about how a motor vehicle is stolen. In fact, you can be charged with grand theft auto if you:
- Enter an Unlocked Car, Find the Keys, and Drive Away
- Break a Window and Hotwire a Car
- Take Keys from a Vehicle’s Owner
Note that the court also does not care why a motor vehicle was stolen. Individuals can be convicted of grand theft auto if they stole a motor vehicle and:
- Abandoned It Along the Road
- Kept It to Drive
- Sold It
You can learn more about the intricacies of this law by contacting a Long Beach criminal defense lawyer today. It will take time to build a solid defense against any grand theft auto charges. Let your lawyer focus on constructing your case by getting professional help right away.
Grand Theft Auto Penalties in Long Beach
Grand theft auto can technically be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony in Long Beach courts. However, misdemeanor charges are rarely used to prosecute grand theft auto. This means that you will likely be charged with a felony. The penalties for a felony conviction can include:
- Fines of Up to $10,000
- Jail Time of Up to 3 Years
Note that these penalties can be increased if an individual steals a car worth exceptionally high amounts of money. Cars worth:
- $65,000 – $200,000 Add 1 Year to Your Jail Sentence
- $200,000 or More Add 2 Years to Your Jail Sentence
You do not have to try to face these excessive penalties on your own. A theft crimes lawyer in Long Beach may be able to help you build a solid defense against charges of grand theft auto. Your lawyer could be able to get your charges reduced or even thrown out entirely.
Lower Penalties and Unlawful Taking of a Motor Vehicle Charges
Grand theft auto is not the only criminal charge used to prosecute individuals who steal a car in Long Beach. Depending on your situation, you might be charged instead with unlawful taking of a motor vehicle – also called joyriding.
You can be charged with unlawful taking of a motor vehicle if you take a vehicle without intending to keep it. Joyriding is generally prosecuted as a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor conviction for joyriding can lead to:
- Fines of Up to $5,000
- Jail Time of Up to 1 Year
Your lawyer may be able to get a grand theft auto sentence reduced to joyriding, limiting the legal repercussions you will face. In many cases, prosecutors will even offer you joyriding charges as part of a plea bargain in grand theft auto cases.
However, you should be aware that joyriding is sometimes charged as a felony, which increases the penalties. This can lead to higher fines and a lengthier period of incarceration. Make sure you have help from a Long Beach grand theft auto lawyer when dealing with these complicated legal charges.
You Can Contact a Long Beach Grand Theft Auto Lawyer Today
A conviction for grand theft auto can lead to a lengthy jail sentence and high fines. You can get help standing up to these charges by reaching out to a grand theft auto lawyer in Long Beach right away. The Simmrin Law Group can go over your unique situation and provide you with professional legal advice with a FREE initial case evaluation.
Let us dig into your case. Fill out our online contact form or call (310) 997-4688 to get started today.