Free Legal Defense Consultation on Theft / Shoplifting Charges in FL
Under Florida law, theft is a charge that includes a variety of offenses, such as larceny, shoplifting, stealing, and unlawful taking. Penalties for theft range from felonies to misdemeanors depending on the value of the items allegedly stolen (see penalties below).
Any criminal charge can have serious consequences to your life. Do not plead guilty to a theft charge before you understand all of the legal defense options you may have.
Even if you admit you stole something and made a mistake, and are now prepared to own up to it, that doesn’t mean your punishment should be needlessly harsh. An experienced criminal defense lawyer may be able to get charges dropped in exchange for restitution, or other considerations.
Call to speak with one of our attorneys to find out exactly what you can do to protect yourself and your future. Call (877) 394-6959
to arrange your consultation.
What is Theft under Florida’s criminal statutes?
A person commits “theft” is he or she “knowingly obtains or uses the property…of another with the intent to, either temporarily or permanently: deprive the person of a right to the property or a benefit from the property, OR appropriates the property to his or her own use or to the use of any person not entitled to use of the property.
Can I beat a Theft / Shoplifting Charge?
Yes, we can challenge the witnesses statements, or challenge the “intent” clause of the statute and argue that it was an accident or a misunderstanding.
We can also argue for a dismissal for restitution, or other favorable results that avoid a criminal record, or the harshest penalties.
The defense tactics we use vary greatly depending on the facts of the case, so we will go over all your best options in a free legal consultation.
Florida Theft / Shoplifting Penalties
Theft penalties are sorted by degrees according to the value of the items taken.
First (1st) Degree Grand Theft
If the stolen property is valued at $100,000 or more, then the defendant will be charged with 1st Degree Grand Theft, which is a 1st Degree Felony. First degree felonies have a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.
2nd Degree Grand Theft
If the stolen property is valued between $20,000 and $99,999, then the defendant will be charged with 2nd Degree Grand Theft, which is a 2nd Degree Felony. Second degree felonies have a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.
3rd Degree Grand Theft
If the stolen property is valued between $300 and $19,999, then the defendant will be charged with 3rd Degree Grand Theft, which is a 3rd Degree Felony. A charge of third degree grand theft also applies if the property take is a firearm, a motor vehicle, a commercially farmed animal, a fire extinguisher, any amount of fruit consisting of 2,000 or more individual pieces, any stop sign, construction signs, or anhydrous ammonia.
The penalty for a third degree felony is a maximum of 5 years in jail and a $5,000 fine.
1st Degree Petit Theft (First Degree Petty Theft)
If the property stolen is valued between $100 and $299, then the defendant will be charged with a 1st Degree Misdemeanor, which carries a maximum penalty of 1 year in jail and a $1000 fine.
However, if the defendant has been convicted twice of any theft crime, then he/she will be charged with a 3rd Degree Felony (5 yrs/$5000 max penalty)
2nd Degree Petit Theft (Second Degree Petty Theft)
If the property stolen is valued at less than $100 or not specified in any other theft statute, then the defendant will be charged with a 2nd Degree Misdemeanor, with a maximum sentence of 60 days in jail and a $500 fine.
What is the Finger-Print Rule ?
In every case in which the Defendant is found guilty of petit theft, the defendant’s finger prints shall be taken, in the presence of the judge, and affixed to the written judgment.
FL Statutes §812.014
Free Consultation on any Florida Theft or Shoplifting Charge
Call us now for legal advice on a theft charge in Florida. We will evaluate the facts of your case, and offer you defense options and suggestions.
Whether you made a mistake, or are being unfairly charged, we can help.
Call (877) 394-6959
for your legal consultation from an experienced Florida lawyer who knows how to challenge and defend charges of theft.