Theft crimes in Florida carry serious consequences – even if you are a first time offender. If convicted, you will have a criminal record that could impact every aspect of your life; including social, professional and financial. This is why it is critical that you hire a criminal defense attorney if you are being accused of any type of theft crime – including misdemeanor offenses.
The Types and Consequences of Theft Crimes
The state of Florida has several specific types of thefts that a person may be charged with. The consequences, regardless of the degree of your charge, are serious and long-lasting. These theft categories include:
- Grand Theft – This is based solely on the value of the property stolen. If the stolen property’s value (how much it is worth) exceeds $300, it is considered grand theft under Florida law. If convicted, you may face a third degree felony that can include up to five years in prison.
- Petit Theft – If the value of the stolen property is less than $300, but the value still exceeds $100, you will be charged with petit theft. While it is less serious than grand theft, it is a misdemeanor that carries a potential of up to one year in prison.
- Retail Theft – This crime, also referred to as “shoplifting,” is when a person knowingly obtains or conceals items from the merchant with the intent of acquiring them without payment. The charges and punishments for retail theft will vary depending on the value of the property stolen. If convicted, you may be required to not only serve jail time, but pay restitution for the property that was stolen.
- Dealing in Stolen Property – A person can also be charged with dealing in stolen property or trafficking stolen goods. This may be charged as a second degree felony or a first degree felony depending on the amount and value of goods being trafficked.
The Importance of Adequate Criminal Representation
Regardless of the theft crime you are being accused of, the penalties and consequences could be severe. Florida law does not tolerate theft and Florida authorities seek maximum consequences for those convicted of these crimes. If you have been arrested or you are under suspicion for theft, it is imperative that you seek legal counsel right away.
Contact The Law Office of Timothy Armstrong, P.A. for Your Theft Crime
Work with a criminal defense attorney that has successfully crafted defenses for these very types of cases. The Law Office of Timothy Armstrong, P.A. is here to help you with your theft case and mount an aggressive defense against the charges you are facing. Contact our law firm online or call 904-356-8618 to schedule a consultation regarding your arrest now.