Understanding the difference between Petit Theft and Grand Theft
Florida Petit Theft Statutes
Under Florida Statute 812.014; Theft, the difference between Petit Theft and Grand Theft is explained thoroughly. Proving theft of property requires the prosecution to prove the defendant had the intention to deprive the owner of the property. Petit (known as petty) theft charges are a misdemeanor and the value of the property stolen is less than $300 (unless stolen from a dwelling – then you are looking at a third degree grand theft charge).
Florida Grand Theft Statutes
Grand theft is defined in degrees under Florida law. It is imperative that your criminal defense attorney is informed as to which felony charge you are facing. The degrees of grand theft are:
- Third Degree Grand Theft – Stolen property is valued at less than $20,000 but more than $300
- Second Degree Grand Theft – Stolen property is valued at more than $20,000 but less than $100,000
- First Degree Grand Theft – Stolen property is valued at more than $100,000
Defending Theft Charges
A Jacksonville criminal defense attorney will work with you to mount a defense against theft charges in Florida. The prosecution must prove that you had intent to deprive the owner of the use of their property which means we may be able to demonstrate:
- You had a reasonable expectation that you had the right to the property
- The owner of the property had given you their permission to use or take the property
- We will work hard to ensure you get the best possible defense when you are facing theft charges.
Penalties for Theft Charges in Florida
Your criminal defense attorney in Jacksonville will discuss with you the various penalties you could face for theft charges. Generally, a first conviction on a second-degree petty theft misdemeanor charge can result in 60 days in jail as well as a fine of up to $500. Subsequent convictions could be prosecuted as a felony charge, which could mean prison time of up to five years and fines of up to $1,000.
If you are facing theft charges in Jacksonville, it is imperative you seek legal assistance immediately. Keep in mind, any conviction for a criminal offense will follow you for a lifetime and may hamper your ability to find work, get loans and even find housing. If you are facing petit theft or grand theft charges, contact the Law Office of James Davis at 904-358-0420. Our goal is to ensure you get the best possible defense and protect your future from the stigma associated with a criminal record.