When people think of the term ‘theft,’ they often imagine an individual stealing items from another party or store. While this behavior does constitute a theft charge in Griffin, state shoplifting laws make it a crime to take any action that may reasonably lead to theft as well. On top of this, the penalties for shoplifting are enhanced over other forms of theft.

A Griffin theft lawyer could represent clients accused of all forms of theft to argue their cases in court and work towards achieving a positive outcome. This can include explaining the state’s theft laws, evaluating the information that a prosecutor intends to bring to court, and working to identify realistic goals for your case. If you face charges of this nature, do not hesitate to contact our firm to speak to a dedicated defense attorney.

Theft Laws in Griffin

The most common direct form of theft in Georgia is theft by taking. According to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated § 16-8-2, this involves situations where a person takes the property of another while intending to deprive the owner of its use.

However, state law also prohibits a collection of other behaviors that fall under the umbrella of theft. A common example is shoplifting. While most people know that taking an item from a store without paying for it counts as shoplifting, state law on the subject carries alternative definitions. O.C.G.A. § 16-8-14 defines shoplifting in various ways, including when a person:

  • Conceals or takes possession of goods in a store,
  • Alters price tags
  • Transfers goods from one container to another
  • Interchanges price tags from one item to another, or
  • Wrongfully causes the amount to be paid to be less than the store’s stated price

Another form of theft in Griffin is theft by deception. O.C.G.A. § 16-8-3 defines this act as when a person obtains property by any deceitful means or artful practice with the intention of depriving the owner of the property.  An example may be if a person advertises bicycle repairs, takes the item as advertised, but never returns it to the owner. This would be theft by deception as the defendant took the item under seemingly legitimate pretenses, leaving the owner deprived of their property. A local theft attorney can further explain the exact nature of any example of an arrest under allegations of theft.

Potential Penalties of a Conviction

Penalties for theft can be separated into shoplifting penalties and penalties for all other theft. For general theft, the consequences generally scale upwards in relation to the value of the goods stolen. As outlined by O.C.G.A. § 16-8-12:

  • If the value exceeds $24,999.99, imprisonment for no less than two years but no more than 20 years
  • If the value is between $5,000.00 and $24,999.99, imprisonment for no less than one year but no more than ten years
  • For values between $1,500.00 and $4,999.99, imprisonment for between 1 and five years
  • For all values less than $1,500.00, the crime is charged as a general misdemeanor that can bring up to one year in jail

A seasoned defense attorney can help describe the penalties associated with a particular case of theft in Griffin.

Speak with a Griffin Theft Attorney Today

Knowing how to proceed with a theft charge can be confusing and overwhelming. Thankfully, a Griffin theft lawyer is here to help. They will be at your side every step of the way, from arraignment and bail hearings, through evidentiary motions, all the way to a potential trial. Whether your goal is to come to a fair plea deal or to fight the charges to the end, an attorney will listen to your concerns and needs and fight tirelessly for your freedom. Contact our firm today to get started.

J. Ryan Brown Law, LLC

J. Ryan Brown Law, LLC