The consequences of a theft conviction in Columbia have serious implications. If an individual is convicted of a theft offense they risk going to prison, being on probation for a long period of time, and paying fines which can lead to your freedom being highly affected.
If you are facing theft criminal charges in Columbia you should contact a qualified lawyer. Our Columbia theft lawyers will be able to evaluate your case and review the charges that have been raised against you so they can be able to help you to determine the legal defenses that you have.
The facts and circumstances revolving around your case will determine if your case will be dismissed or if a plea bargain will be arrived at with the help of a qualified Columbia defense attorney.
Different Categories of Theft Charges in Columbia
The SC code sec. 16-13-10 et. esq. gives the definition of larceny as taking services or property that belongs to another individual unlawfully with the intention of depriving that property permanently.
Most of the time in South Carolina larceny falls under two categories. The offenses are classified as a result of what has been taken.
Related Content: What is General Sessions Court in SC?
Petit Larceny is the lowest level of larceny in South Carolina and it is also referred to as petty theft. A person is found to have committed petty theft if the value of the property that they have stolen amounts to $2,000 or it is less than that. Petit larceny is classified as a misdemeanor and if an individual is charged they end up paying fines amounting to $1,000 and spending 30 days in prison. For this reason, it is essential to get in touch with a Columbia theft lawyer.
In South Carolina, grand larceny is also referred to as grand theft. This specific category is applicable in situations that are more serious compared to petit larceny and which are separated into two different classifications, that is;
- Taking properties or services whose value is between $2,000 and $10,000. It is classified as a felony and can result in eth individual serving 5 years in prison and paying fines decided by the court.
- Theft of property valued at $10,000 or more. When a crime of theft occurs as a felony and an individual is convicted they can pay fines decided upon by the court and end up serving a 10-year prison sentence.
Give our Columbia criminal defense lawyers a call and schedule your free initial consultation.
Penalties for Theft Crimes
Penalties for theft crimes can differ depending on the circumstances of the case and the state that you are in. Crimes of theft can result in the following consequences:
If you are charged with a felony you are likely to serve a prison sentence for a number of years. First-time offenders that have committed a misdemeanor offense can serve a prison sentence that ranges from several months or two to three years. However, the court can choose not to impose a prison sentence. A repeat offender can get a maximum prison sentence of 20 years or more.
Even for a first-time theft conviction, you can pay a fine anywhere from $1,000 to as high as $150,000 depending on the severity of the crime.
Aside from being punished for the crime you have committed the court can require an individual to pay the owner back for the loss of property.
An offender can be sentenced to probation as a result of a theft crime. There are a set of terms and regulations that you may be required to abide by for a period of either 12 months or more. During probation, you may need to meet with your probation officer, have a job, pay your child support, and avoid breaking laws. Violating the terms of the probation can result in harsh penalties such as your probation sentence being increased or revoked which can result in an individual being served with additional penalties, jail time, or paying additional fines.
How Our Criminal Defense Attorneys Can Help
Felony theft charges can lead to serious consequences. If you are being charged with a theft offense it is important to talk to a criminal defense attorney. If you get convicted and have a criminal penalty on your record it will have a negative impact. You may find it can be hard to find a job, get a loan, or find housing. Even if you are confident you did nothing wrong you should hire a criminal defense attorney so you can avoid having your life ruined and keep your criminal record clean.
At TF Law our criminal defense lawyer is here to help you navigate through the criminal justice process in Columbia and help ensure that your rights are protected. We are the best law firm in town. Give our law firm a call and talk to our criminal defense attorney today to book your free, no-obligation consultation!