In Harris County, any charges for illegally taking the property of another person, shoplifting, or stealing are called theft. While these charges vary in severity and potential punishment, the repercussions of any theft conviction are lasting. You deserve a high-quality defense of our Harris County Theft Lawyer to this theft charges, which requires the experience of one of Harris County’s top defense firms.
At Greco Neyland, our team of former prosecutors and respected Houston lawyers are prepared to take your case. No matter the severity of theft charges against you, we will develop a strategic and forceful defense that looks to win an acquittal on all theft charges in Harris County.
Harris County Theft Law Firm
Harris County must enforce the theft laws put in place by the State of Texas and defined in the Texas Penal Code. It is in this set of statutes that theft in Harris County is defined, but the application to your case requires the insight and expertise of a Harris County lawyer.
Under Texas law, all versions and types of theft, whether shoplifting, stealing, or grand larceny are defined in a single statute. This consolidated theft statute gives a broad definition of theft that can apply to a variety of situations and circumstances in Harris County.
- Unlawfully appropriating;
- The property of another person;
- With the intent to deprive the rightful owner of such property.
We often think this definition of theft only applies to instances where a defendant intentionally steals property from the rightful owner, but in Harris County, there are further applications. The term unlawfully appropriating is applied to situations when:
- Property is taken without the owner’s consent;
- The defendant possesses or controls property that he or she knows was previously stolen; and
- The defendant is told by law enforcement that specific property is stolen, whether that representation is true or not, and the defendant appropriates the property knowing it to be previously stolen.
This broader definition of theft can be confusing. The advice of a theft lawyer in Harris County can help determine where the accusations against you fall and how to act in your defense.
How Is Theft Punished in Harris County, Texas?
Theft offenses in Harris County cover a very wide range of specific charges and severity. In fact, few other Texas criminal offenses have such a broad possibility of criminal and civil punishment. Theft can be the least serious misdemeanor, a class C felony, or the gravest felony, a felony in the first degree. Our private defense lawyers at Greco Neyland have experience with the entire spectrum of theft charges.
What determines the exact degree and classification of theft? The fair market value of the property is the most influential factor in the theft charges against you.
- Class C misdemeanor: theft of property valued at $50 or less, which is punishable by a maximum fine of $500
- Class B misdemeanor: theft of property valued between $50 and $500, which is punishable by up to 180 days in jail and a fine of $2,000
- Class A misdemeanor: theft of property valued between $500 and $1,500, which is punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of $4,000
- State jail felony: theft of property valued between $1,500 and $20,000, which is punishable by up to two years in county jail and fine of $10,000Felony in the third degree: theft of property between $20,000 and $100,000, which is punishable by 10 years in prison and fine of $10,000
- Felony in the second degree: theft of property between $100,000 and $200,000, which is punishable by 20 years in prison and a fine of $10,000.
- Felony in the first degree: theft of property over $200,000, which is punishable by 99 years in prison and a fine of $10,000.
Few other factors can lead to heightened theft charges, but among the few are the identity of the victim, the means for committing theft, and the type of property stolen.
Hire Harris County’s Top Criminal Defenders
Your defense to theft charges in Harris County is crucial for a number of reasons. It is through a strategic defense that you are able to mitigate or even eliminate the repercussions of a criminal conviction. A criminal defense is required to fully protect your rights before, during, and after the trial. It is also a criminal defense that helps you regain control over the direction of your future. To start creating the defense you deserve, contact Greco Neyland for a free, confidential consultation in our Harris County office.
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