Consequences for Theft in Texas

Our Travis County criminal defense lawyer explains the short and long-term consequences of a theft conviction.

Being arrested for any type of theft is extremely stressful. You likely feel uncertain about what will happen in the upcoming days, weeks, and months. You may also have questions regarding your future and your freedom. The penalties you may face will depend on the value of the goods that were allegedly stolen. If you have been charged with theft, it is important to remember that the situation is not hopeless. Below, our Travis County criminal defense lawyer explains more.

The Definition of Theft in Texas

Under the Texas Penal Code, theft is defined as the illegal taking of property with the intent to deprive the owner of it. Also, when a person receives or sells goods they know are stolen, that is also considered theft. According to the Code, there are many different types of theft including robbery, shoplifting, forgery, property theft, burglary, and other similar crimes.

Legal Penalties for Theft in Travis County

The penalties you may face for theft largely depend on the type of charges you are facing. The higher the value of the property in question, the harsher the consequences.

When the property or services has a value of $1,499 or under, the offense is classified as a misdemeanor. Misdemeanor theft is punishable by up to one year in jail, a maximum fine of $4,000, and other limits on your freedom. For example, if you are put on probation you may not be able to travel as widely as you would like to.

The penalties increase dramatically if you are convicted of felony theft. Felony theft is defined as the theft of any property valued between $1,500 and $20,000. You may face several years, or even decades, in prison as well as a maximum $10,000 fine and other restrictions on your freedom.

First-degree felony theft is the most severe type in Texas. It involves stolen property or services valued at $300,000 or more. If convicted of this offense, you will face between five and 99 years in prison, a maximum $10,000 fine, or both.

Long-Term Penalties for a Theft Conviction

Jail and prison sentences are not, unfortunately, the only type of penalty you will face for a theft conviction. You will also have a permanent criminal record, which can make life very difficult. Employers may run a background check, and for them, a conviction for theft is one of the worst. They may assume that you are not trustworthy, and finding housing can also be a challenge. It is for this reason that it is of the utmost importance that you speak to a lawyer who can build a strong defense for your case.

Call Our Criminal Defense Lawyers in Travis County Today

Being charged with a crime is always a serious matter. If you have been charged with theft, our Travis County criminal defense lawyers at Granger and Mueller, PC, are here to help. Our experienced attorneys know the solid defenses available in these cases and will use them to give you the best chance of retaining your freedom. Call us now at (512) 474-9999 or contact us online to request a consultation and to get the legal advice you need.