Facing Theft Charges?
Theft crimes involve illegally taking or using another person’s property without permission. It is also considered a theft crime to accept or receive property that one knows is stolen. Theft crimes range in severity. On one end of the spectrum, there are crimes like petty theft, such as stealing an item from a store, to serious felony crimes, such as embezzling money from a large corporation.
If you have been accused of committing a theft crime, you need to hire an Austin defense lawyer who has experience handling cases of this nature. A criminal lawyer at Peek & Toland knows the system better than anyone and has successfully defended clients charged with a number of theft crimes, such as:
- Petty theft
- Grand theft
- Motor vehicle theft
- Armed Robbery
- Credit card theft
- Identity theft
Theft Frequently Asked Questions
What are the penalties for theft in Texas?
The penalty for theft depends on the severity of the theft. The charge and punishment’s severity correlates with the worth of the item stolen. For example, an individual who steals a video game worth less than $50, will likely receive a class C misdemeanor punishable by a fine less than $500. However, an individual who embezzles millions of dollars from his or her company could be charged with a first degree felony punishable by 5 years to life imprisonment.
To better explain the penalties for theft in Texas, please review the following:
Class C Misdemeanor
- Theft Amount: Less than $50, or less than $20 if by check.
- Penalty: A fine that cannot exceed $500.
Class B Misdemeanor
- Theft Amount: $50 or more but less than $500, or $20 or more but less than $500 by check.
- Penalty: Imprisonment not to exceed 180 days in county jail and/or a fine not to exceed $2,000.
Class A Misdemeanor
- Theft Amount: $500.00 or more but less than $1,500.
- Penalty: Imprisonment not to exceed 1 year in county jail and/or a fine not to exceed $4,000.
State Jail Felony
- Theft Amount: $1,500 or more but less than $20,000.
- Penalty: Imprisonment ranging in length from 180 days to 2 years in state jail and/or a fine not to exceed $10,000.
- Theft Amount: $20,000 or more but less than $100,000.
- Penalty: Imprisonment ranging in length from 2 to 10 years in state prison and/or a fine not to exceed $10,000.
- Theft Amount: $100,000 or more but less than $200,000.
- Penalty: Imprisonment ranging in length from 2 to 20 years and/or a fine of not to exceed $10,000.
First Degree Felony
- Theft Amount: $200,000 or more.
- Penalty: Imprisonment ranging in length from 5 years to life imprisonment and/or a fine not to exceed $10,000.
If you are facing any of the above theft charges, or if you are seeking a competent and knowledgeable Austin criminal defense attorney, please contact our office.
I was convicted of shoplifting, but now I am being sued civilly, how is that possible?
Texas has a Shoplifting Liability Act, which allows the store owner to sue a convicted shoplifter civilly for the cost of the stolen good and for the cost of recovery. If an individual is convicted of shoplifting, the store owner may bring a civil action against the individual to recover not only the cost of the good, but up to $1,000 from the individual for actual damages. Additionally, if a minor is convicted of shoplifting, his or her parents may be liable to the shop owner up to $5,000 for actual damages.
If you find yourself in a situation where you are being sued civilly for shoplifting, you need an experienced defense attorney to help protect you. The attorneys at Peek & Toland are experienced Austin criminal defense attorneys who can counsel and advise you so your interests are protected. Please contact us for more information or if you have any questions.