Building a Defense For Theft Charges in Prince William County

Depending on the case, an attorney can employ a variety of theft defense strategies that could produce favorable outcomes for their client. Examining the prosecution’s evidence, obtaining eyewitness accounts, and various other factors can determine the direction at which a theft lawyer will attack the case. Therefore, if you have been charged with theft in Prince Williams County, it is pertinent that you contact an experienced lawyer immediately.

Initial Steps

To prepare a defense, an attorney will want to obtain everything that they think the prosecution could use against their client, in order to properly defend against those elements. One of the things that an attorney will always look for is if there is a surveillance video, or if there is an eyewitness who is going to testify that they saw the accused individual actually take the item in question. Generally, these are the two most important things that an attorney looks for – who saw what, and what they saw. A lawyer will also look to see if their client made any statements to police officers. That is something that will often prove to be extremely important, as well as if the individual made any admission of guilt.

Additionally, proving the value of an item is something that an attorney will look into, especially if the situation involves an item that is not a store item, or does not have a value that is readily available. Being able to accurately value the item in question can help the attorney prepare an appropriate defense, and ascertain the perfect strategies to use in a case.

Defense Strategies

First and foremost, an attorney will find out all the information that the prosecution is going to use against their client to try and convict them of the crime. This could include a video, a surveillance video, statements to police officers, law enforcement officers, or individuals called loss prevention officers. These are employees of a store whose job is to observe and follow individuals who may be taking items from the store without paying. These people are trained to observe suspicious behavior and act on it. All of this information could be used against an individual in court. A defense attorney’s strategy depends very much on what this evidence is, and how strongly it could possibly incriminate the accused individual.

Casting Doubt

A further strategy theft lawyers may use to discount the prosecution is to shed doubt on a testimony.  If a witness says they saw something, often times an attorney will not hesitate to try and discount it. For instance, if there is a surveillance video that shows someone perhaps putting something into a bag, a defense attorney may be able to cast doubt on who is in the video, or what is happening in it.

An attorney may also use the defense that a person was not stealing an item, but simply borrowing it with the intent to return it, and that at one point that person sought permission to do so. A final defense strategy that attorneys may use in a theft case, depending on the facts of the case, would be the idea that the individual actually owns the item in question, or thought that they had paid for the item. This it to prove that the individual was not taking it, so it is a defensive right.

Experts to Help

Depending on the type of theft case, it might be necessary to have an expert who is able to testify about various types of impulse control issues or even psychological issues that would be a mitigating factor in a client’s case. Other experts could include their expertise to value in consideration of how to monetize the items stolen. Any kind of expert that would be helpful in taking away some of the evidence the prosecutor is able to use.

Identification experts, eyewitness testimony experts, people who are able to come in and cast doubt on the evidence the prosecutor is bringing forward. The right attorney can help ensure that your case is handled with the determination it needs, with any of these potential experts, in order to provide a favorable outcome.

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