It is illegal to take property without the owner’s permission. However, this simple concept can lead to surprisingly complex criminal accusations. Many theft cases revolve around questions of true ownership of property or whether a defendant knew the property in question was stolen. As a result, an attorney can present various defenses in theft cases, including those alleging simple theft, embezzlement, or shoplifting.
A Manchester theft lawyer at Ruane Attorneys should be your first call when facing these charges. We can listen to your side of the story, explain why the prosecutor is bringing charges, identify the possible penalties for conviction, and develop a strategy to protect you and your rights.
Allegations Involving Simple Theft
Every criminal theft case centers around the idea that a person possesses property to which they have no legal right. The simplest example of this dynamic is the law prohibiting larceny under the State’s penal code. According to Connecticut General Statute § 53a-119, larceny involves taking, carrying, or appropriating another person’s property. This includes theft by force, fraud, or false representation.
Misdemeanor vs. Felony Larceny
The severity of the offense mostly depends on the value of the property in question. Petty larceny involves property valued at $2,000 or less. This is a misdemeanor where a conviction can result in a fine of up to $2,000, one year in jail, or both.
When the value of the items is more than $2,000, the offense becomes a felony. The most serious examples of felonies can result in prison sentences of up to 20 years and maximum fines of $15,000. When the stakes are this high, those facing theft charges should work with a Manchester attorney on an airtight defense.
Other Types of Theft-Related Accusations
The concept of larceny under state law can stretch far beyond simply taking another’s property.
Receipt of Stolen Goods
Not only is it illegal to steal goods, but it is also against the law to receive goods when a person should know they are stolen. Receiving stolen goods is as serious as allegations of personally taking the property from the rightful owner.
Even more serious are allegations that involve taking property by force. Robbery involves a defendant allegedly taking items through the use or threat of force. This can include showing a weapon to accomplish a theft or beating another person to take their possessions. All robberies are felonies under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 53a-133; a conviction can result in up to 20 years in prison.
A theft lawyer at our firm could explain the specifics of a defendant’s charges and work to create a tailored defense.
Contact a Manchester Theft Attorney Today
Every allegation of theft must be taken seriously. Even petty larceny could lead to jail time and fines and will create a criminal record. More severe accusations involving the theft of valuable items or theft using force are felonies, where a conviction will likely result in prison time.
After an arrest for alleged theft, contact Ruane Attorneys right away. A Manchester theft lawyer at our firm can investigate the prosecution’s case and gather evidence to build a strong defense strategy. We are prepared to present convincing arguments in court and work to minimize the penalties you face. Call us today to get started.