Aiken County Theft Lawyer

A theft charge has the potential to result in significant penalties. Additionally, a felony theft charge can result in repercussions that can follow you for the rest of your life. However, an Aiken County theft lawyer could fight by your side to possibly help secure a positive future. If you are facing theft charges, consult with a seasoned criminal defense attorney today.

Understanding These Offenses

In South Carolina, theft is legally referred to as larceny. Title 16, Chapter 13 of the SC Code of Law governing Crimes and Offenses Section 16-13-10 splits larceny into two distinct categories petit (petty) larceny and grand larceny.

The severity of both the charges and potential penalties faced by the defendant determined by the monetary value of the item allegedly taken. Petty larceny occurs when the monetary value of allegedly stolen items is believed or confirmed to be $2,000 or less. Grand larceny is defined as property allegedly taken valued or proven to exceed $2,000.

Proving Theft Occurred

A prosecuting attorney needs to prove beyond a reasonable doubt several specific factors to convince a judge or jury that some form of theft occurred. These factors include:

  • That the accused individual had no intention of returning the items purportedly stolen
  • The property in question was not owned by the defendant
  • The individual in question removed the alleged stolen materials from the home or business entity from which it legally belonged

By hearing a detailed account from the accused, reviewing pertinent evidence, and hearing witness testimony, an Aiken County theft lawyer could formulate a theory that challenges any or all the preceding factors.

Penalties

Petty larceny is labeled a misdemeanor and can result in fines totaling not more than $1,000 and jail time of 30 days or less. Grand larceny offenses are considered felonies. Courts are given some liberties in terms of sentencing. However, if the stolen property is valued at less than $10,000, prison sentences cannot be greater than five years. Should the value of stolen goods exceed $10,000, the sentence can be up to 10 years.

Prior convictions may impact the severity of these penalties. The state can enhance the potential sentence to 10 years upon a person’s third or subsequent arrest for a property crime. Due to the severe penalties that come with a theft charge, it is imperative that someone facing charges contacts an Aiken County theft lawyer.

Challenging Theft Charges

In addition to the potential fines and jail time a theft conviction could bring, such an offense may also result in a permanent mark that could make it difficult for a person with a criminal record to seek or find employment and face significant social stigmas long after they have paid the court-imposed penalties. Therefore, it is important to consult with an aggressive Aiken County theft attorney who could build a defense based on the specific circumstances of a case.

Speaking with an Aiken County Theft Attorney

Theft or larceny charges can potentially lead to harsh penalties. That said, they can be challenged. If you are facing allegations of larceny, an Aiken County theft lawyer can help. They can work with you to tell your side of the story and passionately advocate for your rights. Call today to schedule a consultation.

Aiken County Theft Lawyer