Petty theft is a term that commonly comes up in discussions about criminal offenses, but what exactly does it entail?
The information below provides the legal definition, common examples, and potential consequences for those found guilty of this crime. To discuss a petty theft charge, reach out to a San Marcos theft defense attorney.
At its core, petty theft is the unlawful taking of another person’s property without their consent and with the intent to deprive them permanently of its possession. What sets petty theft apart from other types of theft is the relatively low value of the stolen items.
In Texas, petty theft involves taking items of value that are $100 or less. Besides shoplifting, the crime may include stealing an item such as a wallet or cell phone. The class C misdemeanor leads to a fine of up to $500.
The specific monetary threshold for petty theft, also called petty larceny, varies depending on the jurisdiction, but generally, it involves thefts of items of a much lower value. However, that does not mean you won’t experience serious legal troubles if you commit this class C misdemeanor offense.
Petty theft can occur in various situations. Some common examples include:
It’s important to note that not all instances of taking another person’s property are considered criminal acts. For example, if someone accidentally walks away with an umbrella they thought was theirs or mistakenly picks up someone else’s shopping bag, it isn’t considered petty theft as there was no intent to steal.
The penalties for being found guilty of petty theft can vary depending on several factors—namely, where the crime occurred and any prior criminal history. In general, however, petty theft is considered a misdemeanor offense in Texas and may result in consequences such as:
Petty theft is a criminal offense that involves the unlawful taking of another party’s property of a lower value without their consent and with the intent to permanently deprive them of the item.
If you’re charged with petty theft, you need a lawyer’s help. If you are in Texas, then contact Mendoza Law so you can discuss the details of your case right away.
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