Montgomery County Theft Crime Lawyers
Defending Clients Facing Theft Charges in Norristown & Beyond
If you have been accused of theft in Pennsylvania, it is essential to consult with a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer before making any statements to law enforcement officials. The consequences of a theft crime conviction are severe, and a skilled attorney can help you explore effective defense strategies.
At Solomon, Berschler, Campbell & Thomas, P.C., we understand the stakes you face and are prepared to help you avoid the consequences of a conviction. Our experienced trial lawyers are dedicated to assisting clients to avoid the consequences of theft crime convictions.
Are you facing theft charges in Pennsylvania? Call Solomon, Berschler, Campbell & Thomas, P.C. today at (610) 624-2006 or contact us online to schedule a meeting with one of our theft crime attorneys in Montgomery County!
What is Theft?
In Pennsylvania, a theft crime involves stealing another person or party’s movable property (tangible objects such as merchandise or cars) or immovable property (intangible objects such as electronic funds or real estate interest). The criminal penalties for theft are based on the value of the stolen property.
Types of Theft Offenses in Pennsylvania
In Pennsylvania, theft offenses encompass a range of actions involving the unlawful taking or exerting control over someone else's property with the intent to deprive them of its value or use. The specific types of theft offenses recognized under Pennsylvania law include:
- Shoplifting: Shoplifting refers to unlawfully taking merchandise from a retail store without paying for it or attempting to conceal or alter price tags or packaging. Shoplifting offenses can range from minor summary offenses to more serious misdemeanor charges, depending on the value of the stolen items and prior convictions.
- Petty Theft: Petty theft generally involves the theft of low-value property. In Pennsylvania, petty theft is often considered a summary offense, which carries less severe penalties compared to higher-value theft offenses.
- Grand Theft: Grand theft typically refers to the theft of high-value property or property exceeding a certain threshold. In Pennsylvania, the classification and penalties for grand theft depend on the value of the stolen property and can range from a misdemeanor to a felony.
- Felony Theft: Felony theft encompasses theft offenses that are charged as felonies due to the nature of the offense or the value of the stolen property. Felony theft charges carry more severe penalties compared to misdemeanor theft offenses and can result in significant fines and imprisonment.
- Theft by Deception: This offense involves intentionally deceiving someone to obtain control over their property. Examples include using false pretenses, fraudulent schemes, or false representations to obtain someone's property or services.
- Theft by Extortion: This offense occurs when a person unlawfully obtains property or services from another by threatening to commit a future criminal act, such as violence or damage to property.
- Theft of Services: This offense involves obtaining services, such as utilities, telecommunications, or transportation, without paying for them or by deception.
- Receiving Stolen Property: This offense involves knowingly receiving or acquiring property stolen by someone else, intending to deprive the rightful owner of its possession.
- Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle: This offense occurs when someone unlawfully takes or operates a motor vehicle without the owner's permission, intending to deprive the owner of its possession temporarily.
It's important to note that the specific elements and penalties for each type of theft offense can vary depending on the circumstances of the case, including the value of the stolen property and the defendant's prior criminal history. Consulting with a knowledgeable Montgomery County Theft Crimes attorney is crucial to understand the specific charges you may face and mount an effective defense.
What are the Penalties for Theft Crimes in Pennsylvania?
The following is a breakdown of the PA theft offenses and their penalties:
- Third-degree misdemeanor theft – If the property taken is worth less than $50, then a defendant faces a jail sentence of up to one year and a maximum fine of $2,500.
- Second-degree misdemeanor theft – If the property taken is worth between over $50 and less than $200, then a defendant faces a jail term of up to two years and a maximum fine of $5,000.
- First-degree misdemeanor theft – If the property taken is worth more than $200, then a defendant faces a jail sentence of up to five years and a maximum fine of $10,000.
- Third-degree felony theft – If the property is worth more than $2,000, or is a vehicle, then a defendant faces imprisonment for up to seven years and a maximum fine of $15,000.
- Second-degree felony theft – If the property taken is a firearm or stolen during a disaster, then a defendant faces imprisonment for up to 10 years and a maximum fine of $25,000.
- First-degree felony theft – If the property taken is a firearm and the receiver gains to profit from selling stolen items, then a defendant faces imprisonment for up to 20 years and a maximum fine of $25,000.
As you can see, the penalties for theft crimes can range from small fines to decades-long prison sentences. However, any theft crime conviction on your record will likely hamper your ability to find future employment — employers simply do not like taking risks on people with a history of theft.
Contact Our Montgomery Theft Crimes Attorneys Today
If you are facing theft charges in Pennsylvania, seeking the guidance and representation of an experienced theft crime attorney is crucial. At Solomon, Berschler, Campbell & Thomas, P.C., our skilled lawyers understand the severity of the consequences associated with theft crime convictions. We are committed to helping clients avoid these outcomes by exploring effective defense strategies tailored to their specific cases!
Contact Solomon, Berschler, Campbell & Thomas today to schedule a FREE consultation with one of our theft crimes lawyers in Montgomery County!