There are many different ways a person can be charged with theft in the state of Georgia. Depending on the amount of the property in question or the value of it (how much it costs), theft is either a misdemeanor or a felony. Felony theft crimes could involve up to ten years in jail. Remember that a misdemeanor, while involving less severe consequences than a felony, will still impact your day-to-day life if not handled properly. Your tarnished criminal record could affect your life for days to come. If you’ve been charged with a theft crime in Atlanta, regardless of whether it is a felony or a misdemeanor, you need a theft defense lawyer by your side as soon as possible.
You most likely have questions: If I didn’t know it was stolen property can I be arrested for theft? If I can’t find my receipt, is there any way to prove my innocence? How long will a shoplifting charge stay on my criminal record? Will I face jail time if this is my second fraud theft charge?
At Pak and McRae Law, LLC, we firmly believe that you are innocent until you are proven guilty, and we will treat you as such. From the moment you contact our Atlanta criminal defense attorneys, we will act in the best interest of you and your family. We will be honest and open—we maintain consistent communication. Our team is knowledgeable in Georgia theft laws, and we understand the Atlanta criminal justice system. We are more than capable of navigating you through this confusing process. We will advocate for your rights and do what is best for your future and your family’s.
Is there a difference between theft, burglary, robbery, and larceny?
Robbery, theft, burglary, and larceny are commonly confused criminal terms; however, they are not necessarily the same things.
- Theft: By definition, theft happens when an individual unlawfully obtains the property or currency of another party and then intends to deprive them of that property.
- Larceny: Larceny is the theft of someone’s personal property. Basically, this is a lawyer’s term for “stealing.”
- Robbery: This is the act of stealing someone else’s property, but it also involves violence. If there was force involved in the act, it could be considered robbery.
- Burglary: This involves breaking and entering into someone else’s property (home or business) and proceeding to steal. Unlike robbery, this doesn’t necessarily include violence.
Before being charged with any of these, it is likely you have never heard of them before, and that’s okay. At Pak and McRae Law, LLC, our criminal defense attorneys are here to explain what your charges mean. We think this is crucial; in order for you to understand the consequences, or what it means to have charges dismissed, you first need to fully comprehend your charge and how it will affect your finances, your criminal record, and your future. Ask us any and all questions—Pak and McRae Law, LLC, is your resource.
Types of Theft by Georgia Law
It is crucial that you work with an attorney who understands Georgia theft laws. At Pak and McRae Law, LLC, our Atlanta defense lawyers have competently fought for the rights of Georgia individuals when they’ve been charged with the following types of theft crimes:
Theft by taking: The simplest form of theft is simply taking the property belonging to another person or entity and then depriving them of their property.
Theft by deception: This occurs when something is taken by fraudulent means. It could include billing someone for a service that isn’t able to be completed; it could also include selling an item to someone that has a lien or loan on it. In some states, this is known as “fraud.”
Theft by conversion: This occurs when payment is taken from someone and, instead of applying that money toward what it was intended for, it is used for personal purposes. An example of this is if an employee takes a payment for an account or a good and then pockets the money for his or her own use.
Theft of services: This occurs when an individual allows someone to perform a service and obtains the benefits of those services, but then neglects to pay that person for it. This could happen if someone had his or her car fixed by a body shop and then later refused to pay the bill after getting the car back.
Theft by receiving stolen property: This happens when someone knowingly accepts or purchases property that has been stolen from another party. A prime example of this would be buying parts from a stolen vehicle. This can also happen through Internet transactions.
Theft of lost or mislaid property: This occurs if someone acquires property of another individual such as a lost wallet or cell phone and then makes no attempt to return the property to the rightful owner. If no legitimate attempt is made, then it falls under this category and is actually considered a crime.
Shoplifting: This includes attempting to conceal, take, change the price of, or not pay in full for an item taken from a store. Under Georgia theft laws, this charge becomes a felony when the item in question is valued over $300.
If you or your family member has been arrested for one of these crimes, please contact our Atlanta theft defense lawyers immediately. Before your trial; before your arraignment; before you speak with the police officers; you must protect your constitutional rights, and the way to do that is with an experienced Atlanta criminal defense attorney by your side.