Have You Been Charged with Theft in South Florida? Experienced Fort Lauderdale Attorneys Can Provide Effective Defense Strategies


 How Can A Theft Charge Hurt You?

All legal ramifications aside, other aspects of your life may be negatively affected if you are charged and convicted of theft. You may lose your job, and will possibly be deprived of potential future educational or employment opportunities; driving privileges and any professional licenses you may have obtained may also be affected. The respect of your family, friends, and coworkers may even be in jeopardy. With over 30 years of criminal law and trial experience, Kenneth Padowitz can empathize with you; the stress you may experience because of an accusation of theft can take a negative toll on your health. In these situations it is best to find yourself an aggressive criminal defense attorney, and let them do the worrying for you.

What is Theft, And How Is It Different From Burglary or Robbery?

People often mistakenly use the terms theft, burglary, and robbery interchangeably; Under Florida law, they are different, each with their own definition, set of laws, and maximum penalties. Theft is considered the act of taking another person’s property without the owner’s permission. Taking anything, no matter how small or seemingly without value, counts as a theft. Depending on what is stolen and the monetary value of the item, the type of charge and penalties will vary. Possession of stolen property or the act of writing worthless checks, drafts, or debit card orders can also be considered theft. Burglary is defined as “unlawfully entering a dwelling, structure or conveyance with the intent to commit a crime inside.” Robbery means something valuable was taken by force or the threat of force.

What Are The Differences In Theft Charges?

Petit Theft

Referred to as a crime of dishonesty, petit theft is the term often used when referring to retail theft or shoplifting. For a first offense, it is considered a second-degree misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to 60 days in jail. A second offense will be charged as a first-degree misdemeanor, and will carry more penalties, punishable by up to one year in jail; a possible suspension of your driver’s license for up to 6 months may also be given if ultimately convicted. All petit theft convictions will require you to be fingerprinted. This may negatively effect your ability to peruse your chosen career or enroll in certain colleges.

Grand Theft

All grand thefts are felony charges. With penalties of up to 15 years in prison and fines of up to $10,000, you will be charged with first-degree grand theft if the value of the stolen property is $100,000 or more. Anything stolen with a value between $20,000 and $99,999 will result in a charge of second-degree grand theft. This also carries a maximum prison sentence of 15 years and a fine of up to $10,000. Another term for grand theft auto, a third-degree theft charge will be given to any items valued between $300 and $19,999. Theft of firearms, fire extinguishers, road signs, anhydrous ammonia, or farm animals is also considered a third-degree offense. Those convicted of third-degree grand theft face a maximum sentence of 5 years, and a fine of up to $5,000.

Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Attorney Kenneth Padowitz Will Aggressively Defend Your Freedom

Strategic Criminal Defense

If you have been charged with theft of any kind, or believe you may be charged sometime in the near future, give Kenneth Padowitz, Esq. a call to discuss your situation. Kenneth Padowitz is an experienced Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney with trial-proven results from cases across the United States. Don’t let this accusation rob you of your freedom. Call Kenneth Padowitz, P.A. today.


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