Theft & Property Crimes Attorney in San Luis, Obispo
Theft crimes have an element of moral shame in our society. The allegations of theft can ruin your reputation and career, and a conviction can carry hefty fines and a lengthy prison sentence. In times like these, it is crucial to consult a skilled San Luis Obispo criminal defense attorney who can protect your best interests and aggressively defend your freedom.
At 805 Law Group, we have been helping clients and families in Atascadero and throughout San Luis Obispo County who are dealing with theft and property crimes. Our legal team can provide the best defense you need during this difficult time and pursue every opportunity to secure a reduction or dismissal of your charges on your behalf.
Contact us now and schedule an initial case evaluation with our criminal defense law firm.
Why Do I Need a Theft and Property Crimes Lawyer in San Luis Obispo?
Being charged with a theft or property crime can be a traumatic experience. A conviction can carry serious and life-changing consequences. Depending on the value of the property alleged to have been stolen or damaged, you may be charged with either a misdemeanor or felony.
If you have been accused of theft, it is imperative to seek legal advice from our credible San Luis Obispo theft and property crimes lawyers at 805 Law Group to help you protect your rights. We will find weaknesses in the prosecution’s case and successfully defend you against the charges. We truly believe you are innocent until proven guilty, and we are committed to assisting you throughout all stages of your case. We will explore every possible option available to protect you from incarceration and keep your criminal record free from theft and property crime-related convictions.
What is Theft and Property Crime?
What Are the Common Theft Crimes in San Luis Obispo?
Theft is a broad term for a range of crimes committed against another person’s tangible or intangible property. There are many different types of theft. While all of these crimes have the same basic elements, they also have slight variations and different possible punishments if you are found guilty. Each case is different, so it is important to have a credible San Luis Obispo theft and property crimes attorney who pays attention to the specifics of your charges and circumstances.
Common theft crimes in San Luis Obispo include:
- Grand theft
- Petty theft
- Identity theft
- First-degree burglary
- Second-degree burglary
What are the Penalties for Theft and Property Crimes in San Luis Obispo?
Theft crimes carry potential punishments that range from the relatively minor to the extremely serious. The consequences may vary from case to case. Some of the factors that can influence the penalties of this crime include the value of the stolen or damaged property, whether or not the offender’s actions caused danger to another person, or whether or not a weapon was used during the commission of the offense.
Whether charged with a misdemeanor or felony, you may face the following consequences:
- Jail time
- A criminal record
- Unsupervised or supervised probation
- Court-ordered theft counseling
- Community service
The penalties for theft and property crimes depend on the circumstances involved in the alleged offense. If you are convicted of a property crime, a reliable attorneys can help you find mitigating factors that could lead to having your charges and potential penalties reduced.
What are the Possible Defense Strategies against Theft and Property Crimes?
Just because you are accused of theft and property crime, it does not automatically mean that you will be convicted. Many legal defenses can be used in theft and property crime cases. Your defense will depend on the crime you allegedly committed and the particular facts of your case. A competent San Luis Obispo theft and property crimes attorney can help build a strong defense strategy to get your criminal charge reduced or dismissed. Some defense strategies commonly used in theft cases include:
Lack of Intent
One of the common issues that arise in defending property crimes is whether or not the person who had committed the offense acted with the required criminal intent or mental state. You must have the intent to steal to be convicted of a theft crime. If you had permission to take property or reasonably believed that you had permission to take the property, then you lacked the intent to commit the crime.
Ownership or Right to the Property
An individual who is accused of theft and property crime charges may have a valid defense if they’re able to establish in good faith that the property they took was theirs or that they had a valid claim to it. This defense argues that the defendant believed they were entitled to the property.
Return of Property
Generally, returning stolen property is not considered an effective defense to a charge of theft. However, it can be used for a possible plea deal and may also help with reducing the penalties in a case. This defense can establish that the defendant borrowed the property and was going to return it to the owner after temporary use.
If a person convinced you to steal something that you wouldn’t have otherwise taken, then you may be able to raise an entrapment defense. This defense argues the defendant was coerced by violence or threats to commit theft. The theory behind the entrapment defense is to deter government conduct that entices innocent persons to break the law.