Theft Charges and Finding Good Criminal Defense
Pennsylvania’s theft laws are very strict, and if convicted, you could face jail time and heavy fines. It is important to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney if you have been charged with theft. They can guide you through the criminal justice system and protect your rights. A good defense strategy will be developed by your attorney after investigating the facts of your case. A not guilty verdict at trial, reduction or dismissal of charges will be our goal.
Pennsylvania Theft Charges Carry Major Penalties
Theft in Pennsylvania may be classified as either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on its value. There is a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a fine of $10,000 for misdemeanor theft offenses. A felony theft offense carries a maximum sentence of seven years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000. If you are facing theft charges, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you fight for your freedom.
Criminal Defense Commonly Used in a Theft Case?
There are a number of defenses that can be used in a theft case, depending on the facts. Some common defenses include:
- Lack of intent to steal – In order to be convicted of theft, the prosecution must prove that you intended to permanently deprive the owner of the property. If you did not have this intent, you could not be convicted of theft.
- Mistake of fact – If you reasonably believed that you were entitled to the property in question, you cannot be guilty of theft.
- Consent – If the owner of the property consented to your taking or keeping of the property, you could not be guilty of theft.
- Entrapment – Entrapment occurs when someone convinces another person to commit the theft. This type of defense applies when the entrapping person was the one who encouraged or gave the idea to commit the theft to another individual. The idea is to charge the entrapping person because the one who committed the theft was lured into doing it.
- Flawed valuation – Charges may be dropped if the item that was stolen was overvalued. For example, a television the owner said was valued at $1,000 was worth only about $200.
Why Do I Need a Good Defense Lawyer for a Charge of Theft?
A charge of theft is a serious matter that can have a lasting impact on your life. If you are convicted, you could face jail time, heavy fines and a criminal record. An experienced criminal defense attorney will fight for your freedom and work to get the charges against you reduced or dismissed. Contact an attorney today to discuss your case and learn more about your defense options.
Travis Law Firm: Criminal Theft Attorneys
We have been fighting for clients’ rights around Erie, Edinboro and Warren for more than 25 years at the Travis Law Firm. It is understandable how fearful a criminal charge can be, so we keep our clients informed and respond to their inquiries as quickly as possible. We can discuss your charges over the phone at (814) 277-2222, or you can contact us online. Our team understands that you are worried about losing financial resources and facing incarceration and work hard to defend you.