Theft Attorney in Oakland, California
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Choosing a Theft Lawyer in Oakland, California
Taking something that belongs to someone else without their permission or compensation is considered stealing and is against the law. Sometimes, people can be accused of stealing when they feel they did nothing wrong. Perhaps, there was a misunderstanding or extenuating circumstances.
If you were accused of stealing, you might wish to consult a criminal defense attorney in Oakland, CA, focusing on theft. They can offer legal information and advice regarding your charges. They could plan your defense strategy and represent you in court.
The Law Office of Rebecca Feigelson could help if you are facing theft charges.
Some Common Types of Theft Crimes in California
Theft crimes in California include:
Petty theft, such as shoplifting, is the unlawful taking of property worth $950 or less. Petty theft crimes are typically charged as misdemeanors.
Grand theft is unlawfully stealing property worth more than $950. Grand theft can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony.
Embezzlement is the theft of property entrusted to an individual by someone else. There must be a fiduciary relationship between the defendant and the owner of the property, such as an employer-employee relationship.
Burglary is unlawfully entering a building or structure intending to commit theft or another felony.
Robbery is using force or fear to take someone else’s property. Robbery is always a felony and carries a penalty of up to nine years in prison.
Penalties for Theft in California
The penalties for theft under the California Penal Code can vary depending on the facts of the crime, the value of the property stolen, and the defendant’s criminal history.
Here are some penalties for theft in California:
Petty theft is charged as a misdemeanor and is punishable by six months maximum in county jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
Grand theft can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the stolen property’s value and other factors. Misdemeanor grand theft is punishable by the one-year maximum in jail time and a fine of up to $1,000. Felony grand theft is punishable by three years maximum in state prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
Aggravated theft: Depending on the specific circumstances, a felony conviction for aggravated theft may result in a sentence of several years in state prison.
Embezzlement: Depending on the property’s value and other factors, embezzlement can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony. Therefore, a conviction for embezzlement can result in a sentence of three years maximum in state prison and fines of up to $10,000.
Retaining the services of a skilled criminal defense attorney whose legal work includes theft crimes may help you avoid the maximum fine and result in a favorable outcome.
Possible Defenses Against a Theft Charge
There are several possible defenses that your attorney could consider raising against a theft charge.
Here are some of the most common defenses to theft charges in California:
Lack of intent: To be convicted of theft, the prosecution has to prove the defendant intended to steal. If the defendant can show that they did not intend to steal, they may be able to avoid conviction.
Mistaken identity: If the prosecution has identified the wrong person as the perpetrator of the theft, the defendant can raise a defense of mistaken identity.
Consent: If the defendant believed they had the owner’s permission to take the property, they could raise a defense of consent.
Ownership: If the defendant believed they were the rightful owner of the property or had a legitimate claim to it, they could raise a defense of ownership.
Duress or coercion: If the defendant was forced to commit theft under the threat of harm, they could raise a defense of duress or coercion.
Entrapment: If law enforcement officers induced the defendant to commit the theft, they could raise a defense of entrapment.
A California Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help
A California criminal defense attorney, such as from the Law Office of Rebecca Feigelson, can be beneficial if you face theft charges. Here are some specific ways that a California criminal defense attorney can assist you in a theft case:
- Assess the case: A criminal defense attorney can investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged theft. They can interview witnesses, review surveillance footage, and gather other evidence that may help your case.
- Challenge the evidence: A criminal defense attorney can examine the prosecution’s evidence to identify weaknesses or inconsistencies that could be used to challenge the charges against you.
- Negotiate with the prosecution: In some cases, negotiating a plea bargain with the prosecution may be possible.
- Represent you in court: If your case goes to trial, a criminal defense attorney can represent you and present a strong defense on your behalf.
- Advocate for your rights: An embezzlement lawyer can advocate for your rights throughout the criminal justice process, including during police interrogations, bail hearings, and court appearances.
Contact the Law Office of Rebecca Feigelson to discuss your case today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Preparing a few questions before consulting with your Oakland attorney can be helpful. Here are a few common queries to get you started.
What Is the Statute for Theft?
The California statute for theft is Penal Code 484(a).
What Is Considered a Theft Crime in California?
In California, theft is defined as unlawfully taking someone else’s property without their consent, intending to permanently deprive them of such property.
Under California law, a theft crime is classified based on the stolen property’s value and the circumstances of the offense.
Are Fraud and Embezzlement Theft Crimes?
Fraud allegations are brought when someone deceives another person to take their property or money. In California, fraud can be a misdemeanor or felony charge, depending on the offense’s circumstances.
Embezzlement involves the theft of property entrusted to someone else, such as an employee who steals from their employer. Embezzlement can also involve the misappropriation of funds by someone entrusted to manage those funds, such as the trustee or executor of an estate.
In a California criminal case, embezzlement can be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor, depending on the property’s value and the offense’s circumstances.