Penalties for Falls Church Theft Offenses

The penalties for a theft offense in Falls Church vary depending on the value of items taken, previous criminal record, and other aggravating factors. If you have been charged with a theft offense, contact a Falls Church theft lawyer for assistance in building a defense for your case.

Criminal Penalties

Depending on what the individual is charged with, a misdemeanor theft charge penalty could be up to 12 months in jail and up to a fine of $2,500.00. If they are charged with a felony, it could be anywhere from months or years in prison to fines from $2,500.00 up to tens of thousands of dollars.

If it is the third misdemeanor theft charge, the misdemeanor offense would be upgraded to a felony charge based on the previous theft charges. The consequences for a third misdemeanor larceny offense would be up to five years in jail. The larger a person’s criminal record, the more likely they are to receive the maximum sentence.

The consequences of felony theft in Falls Church could be from five years in prison up to 20 or more years in prison, depending on the elements of the case and how many counts the individual is charged with. The major difference is lengthier prison time as opposed to simply jail time on the table and the fines are going to be much larger.

Harshest Penalty

The harshest penalty that a person might receive if they are convicted of theft will depend on if the elements of the theft are bad enough. If it is a gruesome robbery involving injury and various other things, the person could be looking at decades in prison, huge fines, and huge court costs.

Impact of Prior Convictions

Every criminal conviction is going to negatively affect a person charged with theft, but if somebody has been charged and convicted of theft before, it will trigger certain actions on the part of the court. For example, if it is somebody’s second offense of petty larceny, it will be treated more harshly and there will probably be jail time involved.

If it is somebody’s third time for petty larceny, then it will be treated as a felony. Additionally, when somebody is charged with a felony theft and has received previous felony convictions, the Virginia sentencing guidelines will be more severe.

First Offender Program

There are different outcomes depending on the severity of the offense that a person is charged with. For example, if a person is charged with petty larceny for taking something under $500, it will be a class one misdemeanor and the defendant might be eligible for what is called the first offender program. After completing community service hours and a class they might have their charges dismissed.These are generally for people who do not have criminal records and are presented for the first time in front of the court.

If a first offender is charged with, for example, a grand larceny—so a theft of something over $500—sometimes prosecutors or judges are willing to knock it down to just a misdemeanor charge such as a petty larceny offense. It really just depends on the facts of a person’s case and on their record.

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