- California’s law on grand theft defines grand theft as the intentional taking away of the property of another when:
- Property stolen was worth more than $950.
- The property was taken directly off of the property owner, no matter how much the property is worth (i.e. taken from the clothing of, on the body of, or in a container held or carried by a person, as in a mugging);
- The property was of a certain type, including:
- Automobile or ﬁrearm.
- Fruit or nuts worth more than $250. ﬁsh, shellﬁsh, or aquacultural products worth more than $250 if taken from a commercial ﬁshery or research operation.
- Certain animals like a horse.
Except as listed above, if the value of the stolen property is $950 or less, the theft is considered to be “petty theft” pursuant to California Penal Code Section 484 and 488
Former Prosecutor Diana Aizman Providing Legal Analysis
- Shoplifting jewelry from a jewelry store that is valued over $950.
- Picking a wallet from a woman’s purse while sitting next to her on the bus.
- Stealing computers or mobile devices.
- No Intent to Steal: Intent is one of the requisite elements that a prosecutor has to show in order to convict of a theft crime. If you did not have intent to steal in the first place, you are not guilty of grand theft.
- Consent From the Owner: If the owner of the property that you allegedly stole gave you permission to take the property, you are not guilty of grand theft.
- Belief that the Property Belonged to You: If the property actually belonged to you or if you honestly but mistakenly thought that the property you took belonged to you, you are not guilty of grand theft. This additionally shows that your intent was not to take the property; rather to claim or re-claim what you thought was rightfully yours.
- You Were Falsely Accused: If you were wrongfully accused of taking something, but you did not do so, or did not intent to do so, your criminal defense attorney will ensure to thoroughly investigate the evidence in your favor and to try to show that you were framed, set up, or just plainly wrongfully blamed for something you did not do.
Grand theft can be charged either as a misdemeanor or felony offense. The level of the penalty depends on the facts of the case and your criminal history.
Misdemeanor: If convicted of the offense as a misdemeanor, you face up to 1 year in a county jail.
The attorneys at the Aizman Law Firm can help you if have been charged under penal code 487 pc. Contact the Aizman law Firm if you have any questions or if you would like a free consultation at 818-351-9555
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- Theft can be committed in several ways, as listed below in the next section, such as permanently depriving another of their property; temporarily depriving another of their property in a way in which the owner is denied of a major part of its value or enjoyment; deceiving or defrauding another of their property or services; or with the intent to do any of the above [↩]
- The value of the stolen item(s) is determined by the fair market value if it involves property. If it involves services, the value is determined by the contract price if there was a contract, or the reasonable value/rate for services in the area if there was no contract [↩]