A property crime charge can incur fines, jail time, and other problems. Whether the charge you are facing involves wrongfully entering someone’s property, destroying someone’s property, theft, or another property-related offense, our Los Angeles property crimes attorneys are here to help.
There are several categories of property crimes in Los Angeles, and our criminal defense attorneys at Simmrin Law Group are experienced in defending clients from property-related charges. A Los Angeles property crimes lawyer understands the ins and outs of criminal law and can ensure that your rights are protected at all times.
Should I Hire an Attorney if I’m Facing a Property Crime Charge in Los Angeles?
We recommend hiring an attorney for a property crime charge in Los Angeles. Even if you’ve faced property crime charges before—and even if you never faced a conviction for those charges—you may not be familiar with criminal defense tactics.
A Los Angeles property crimes attorney from Simmrin Law Group is familiar with criminal law and how to defend those facing charges like yours. Having an attorney to lead your property crimes defense may:
- Allow you to spend time with loved ones and friends: A property crime charge can cause great uncertainty about the future. You deserve to spend as much time as possible with the ones you care about—family, friends, and other important people in your life.
- Provide peace of mind: You may face anxiety about your property crime charge until the very moment we reach a solution. However, knowing that an attorney is actively working on your behalf could provide peace of mind.
- Provide a sounding board for your questions, concerns, and ideas: We have clients who want to be actively involved in their case—it is their future on the line, so we encourage such participation. Our attorneys serving Los Angeles will serve as a teammate who can answer your questions, address your concerns, and provide feedback for any case-related ideas you come up with.
- Result in a stronger defense for you: Though Simmrin Law Group never guarantees specific case results, it’s reasonable that an attorney could help you build a stronger case than you would otherwise. You are getting an additional set of eyes and hands with legal experience in property crime defense.
You may not often see defendants representing themselves in court, and there is a reason for this. When your freedom, financial stability, and reputation are on the line, you may want someone in your corner who is trained in criminal defense. This is the benefit that Simmrin Law Group can provide you.
Call us today to schedule an appointment with an attorney when faced with a charge of property crime in Los Angeles, CA.
What Are the Risks if I Don’t Hire a Property Crimes Lawyer in Los Angeles?
The potential criminal penalties alone require you to take your charges seriously. Beyond the formal legal consequences, though, failing to present a strong defense may:
- Derail your professional dreams, as a criminal record may deter prospective employers from hiring you
- Cause difficulty in obtaining housing, as landlords and salespeople may be hesitant to rent or sell to someone with a property crime on their record.
- Affect your rights as a parent
- Lessening your overall quality of life, as a lack of good employment and housing, can severely affect your mental and physical health.
A Los Angeles property crimes lawyer at Simmrin Law Group will work relentlessly to spare you from these life-changing consequences.
For a free legal consultation with a property crimes lawyer serving Los Angeles, call (310) 896-2723
What Is a Property Crime?
The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) defines a property crime as a crime in which “a victim’s property is stolen or destroyed, without the use or threat of force against the victim.” Specific property crimes include:
- Criminal trespassing
A property crimes lawyer in Los Angeles can answer any questions about pending charges. We offer a free consultation, so you can learn what the next steps could be for your case before you hire one of our Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys.
Los Angeles Property Crimes Lawyer Near Me (310) 896-2723
What Is Criminal Trespassing?
In Los Angeles and throughout California, trespassing generally qualifies as a minor infraction that results in a small fine. However, there are situations in which a person can be charged with criminal trespassing, which is more serious.
Criminal trespassing occurs when a person enters someone else’s property intending to interfere with the property, which could include damaging the property. Though a verbal threat can aggravate the charge, typical trespassing charges are brought when a person refuses to leave the property when asked, when someone disrupts a business’s operation, or when a person is “squatting” or illegally occupying a location.
Someone may face a trespassing charge even if they don’t interfere with or damage property. Intent may be most important, but intent can be very difficult to prove in court. Our criminal defense attorneys can help you devise the appropriate defenses to these charges, with such defenses possibly including:
- You were allowed on the premises
- No actual interference or damage occurred
- You did not intend to interfere with or damage the property
If you’ve been accused of trespassing, a Los Angeles property crimes attorney from Simmrin Law Group could help you avoid severe consequences. The sooner you contact an attorney, the sooner you can have peace of mind that your rights are being protected.
Burglary in Los Angeles
Burglary may qualify as a more serious version of criminal trespassing, and the two can be charged together. Burglary generally has two main components:
1) Entering another person’s property
2) Intending to commit a crime on another person’s property
As with criminal trespassing, intent is one of the key components of a burglary charge in Los Angeles. Since intent can be difficult for prosecutors to prove, our criminal defense attorneys will work on challenging the prosecution’s case. Some possible defenses against a burglary charge include the following:
- Lack of evidence
- Problematic evidence that must be excluded
- Mistaken identity
- The property you intended to take was your own.
A burglary lawyer in Los Angeles from our firm could argue your charge down or even have the charge dismissed.
Complete a Free Case Evaluation form now
What Is the Difference Between Burglary, Theft, and Robbery?
Burglary, theft, and robbery may be confused by those without experience in criminal defense. While there are common features of each, knowing the difference between the three crimes is important:
- Theft, also known as larceny, is taking someone else’s property to deprive them of it permanently.
- Burglary does not necessarily have to involve theft, though it can. Burglary is the act of breaking into and entering someone’s property with the intent to commit a crime.
- Robbery involves theft—taking something from someone else using either force or the threat of force.
If you’re still unclear about the differences between these offenses, our team can explain further when we meet with you.
If you’ve been accused of burglary, a property crimes attorney in Los Angeles may be able to reduce your charge to petty theft or even completely forgive you.
Crimes Involving the Destruction of Property
Destroying property that does not belong to you can be a serious offense in Los Angeles. However, our criminal defense lawyers have plenty of experience defending clients against these charges. Two prominent property damage-related charges are arson and vandalism.
What Are the Different Types of Arson in L.A.?
Our Los Angeles property crimes lawyers have extensive knowledge of arson charges. Typically charged as a felony offense, arson can be classified as:
- Malicious arson (which is always a felony)
- Reckless burning (which can be a misdemeanor)
The difference between the two charges, spelled out in California Penal Code §450, is that malicious arson involves the intent to defraud a person, harm or kill them, or purposefully destroy their property. This is the more serious charge, resulting in up to 14 years in prison, substantial fines, and permanent convicted felon status.
With such severe penalties at stake, your best option is to contact a dedicated criminal defense attorney.
What Qualifies as Vandalism in Los Angeles?
Vandalism can involve the stereotypical spray paint can, but the charge may include various other activities. For example, a charge of vandalism in Los Angeles can result from the following:
- Keying a car
- Writing messages in wet cement
- Egging a house
A charge of vandalism can result from defacing, destroying, or damaging property that does not belong to you, and the law can be interpreted very loosely. For this reason, it is wise to have a property crimes lawyer in Los Angeles from Simmrin Law Group on your side to challenge the charge.
Penalties for Property Crimes in Los Angeles
Penalties for property crimes in Los Angeles can be harsh, depending on your charge. On top of fines, jail time, and a possible suspended license, your charge may stay on your criminal record if you can’t get it dismissed.
Felony burglary and petty theft come with different penalties in California. While the petty theft version of burglary may lead to a maximum of one year in county jail, felony burglary can lead to up to 6 years in prison, convicted felon status, up to $10,000 in fines, and a strike towards California’s “three-strike” law.
Being convicted of vandalism is not ideal, as it can result in the penalties of:
- Minimum: Up to $1,000 fine and community service
- Maximum: Three years in state prison, fines, suspended driver’s license, community service
While these are possible penalties, we’ll work to help you avoid them. A property crimes attorney in Los Angeles may be able to negotiate with the prosecution and get your charges reduced. If appropriate, we’ll work to obtain a dismissal or not guilty verdict.
Call Our Firm for a Free Consultation
Property crimes can carry hefty penalties, but many charges require clear intent to be proven in court. Los Angeles property crimes lawyers at Simmrin Law Group have experience challenging all the elements of a property crime case to have the charges dropped or lowered.
If you are charged with a property crime in Los Angeles County, call our criminal defense team today for a consultation to discuss your case. A Los Angeles theft crime attorney understands the seriousness of the situation when facing a criminal charge and will fight to protect your rights throughout the case. Call us today to schedule an appointment with a member of our experienced team.