The notion of theft is simple: it is illegal to take any property from someone without their permission. Additionally, a variety of other actions may also lead to allegations of theft. These can include thefts that result from fraud, a refusal to pay for services, or even the receipt of stolen property.
No matter the exact nature of a person’s case, a Carrollton theft lawyer is prepared to develop a strong defense. A skillful criminal defense attorney can work to explain the laws that govern your case and evaluate the strength of the prosecution’s evidence. With these aims in mind, they work to limit the impact of an arrest on your life and endeavor to create reasonable doubt in the minds of jurors.
Many theft cases in Carrollton move forward under the traditional definition of theft – taking someone else’s property from them. The Official Code of Georgia Annotated § 16-8-2 describes theft as taking someone’s property without their permission in a way that intends to deprive the owner of the use of that property. This can include acts as simple as taking a bicycle and not returning it or stealing a package off of a neighbor’s porch.
It is also illegal to commit theft by receiving services and not paying for them. Similarly, you may face charges if someone willingly places an item into your care and you refuse to return the property. Georgia law outlines the different types of theft, each requiring a unique and tailored defense. A Carrollton theft attorney can assess a specific case and work to determine the best next steps for you.
While the state’s various theft laws differ in what a prosecutor must prove to obtain a conviction, they give similar guidelines for the severity of an offense. Under O.C.G.A. § 16-8-12, the main determining factor for the possible punishment for a theft conviction is the value of the item or items involved.
The law says that theft is usually a misdemeanor, which can result in up to one year in jail. However, if the value of the item is at least $1,500.01, the case may be a felony that can lead to a prison sentence of up to five years. The most serious examples can bring prison sentences of 20 years.
Helping clients avoid these convictions and penalties is always the goal of a Carrollton theft attorney. A knowledgeable lawyer can work to contest whether property was taken against the wishes of an owner. They can also dispute the identity of an alleged thief or the supposed value of an item. These strategies could weaken a prosecutor’s case or result in a lesser punishment after a trial.
An arrest, even for items of little value, can have tremendous consequences. State law makes the pettiest of thefts misdemeanors, where convictions create a criminal record and can bring up to one year in jail. As the value of the items in the alleged offense rises, so too does the number and severity of possible penalties. In the most extreme examples, theft cases can carry a prison sentence of decades in prison.
A Carrollton theft lawyer is dedicated to helping you avoid this outcome. They can work to explain the laws in your case, evaluate the evidence that the prosecutor intends to bring to trial, and work out a defense that protects your present and future. Give us a call today to set up your free initial meeting with a dedicated member of our legal team. We are ready to get to work for you.
J. Ryan Brown Law, LLC
J. Ryan Brown Law, LLC