Grand Theft in San Diego
Grand theft is the unlawful taking of another's property without consent, that is valued at more than $950. In determining the value of the stolen property, for the purposes of this section, the reasonable and fair market value shall be the test, and in determining the value of services received the contract price shall be the test. If there be no contract price, the reasonable and going wage for the service rendered shall govern.
Grand Theft by Larceny:
Taking possession of someone else's property without their permission, by moving it, intending to deprive the owner permanently or long enough to deprive that person of a significant value of the property.
Grand Theft by Embezzlement:
Fraudulently using another's property that was entrusted to you, to your benefit, with the intent to deprive the owner temporarily or permanently.
Grand Theft by Trick:
Using deceit to get the another to allow you to take possession of their property or embezzlement, intending to deprive the owner permanently or long enough to deprive that person of a significant value of the property.
Grand Theft by False Pretense:
Deceiving another by making false statements, intending to persuade that person to let you take possession of their property, and that person relied on your false pretense, letting you take ownership of their property.
Understanding Penal Code Section 487
In consideration of the seriousness of petty theft or burglary, California has criminalized it under Penal Code section 487. Under this law, “Grand theft is theft committed when the money, labor, or real or personal property taken is of a value exceeding $950, when the property is taken from the person of another, when the property taken is an automobile or a firearm."
Basically, to convict someone of PC 487, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
- The defendant took possession of another's property;
- The defendant did so without the owner's permission;
- The defendant intended to deprive the owner of the property permanently;
- The defendant moved the property;
- The property was worth more than $950.
Grand Theft Can Be Filed As a Misdemeanor or a Felony
The unlawful taking of another's property without consent, that is valued at more than $950 is a wobbler. A wobbler is a charge that the prosecutor has discretion to file as either a misdemeanor or a felony. In receipt of stolen property cases, the issuing attorney at the District Attorney’s Office will determine the severity of the charges based on the value of the stolen property.
Misdemeanor Grand Theft Penalties
If the value of the stolen property does not exceed $950, you could face:
- A maximum sentence of 1 year in county jail;
- Informal probation.
Felony Grand Theft Penalties
- A maximum sentence of 16 months, 2, or 3 years in California state prison;
- Formal probation.
Because of the severity of the penalties that are involved with petty theft charges, your criminal defense attorney will have to determine which legal defense strategy will work best in your particular situation.
- Consent; the owner authorized you to take the property.
- Accident; you believed you were the rightful owner of the property.
- False Accusation; you owned the property.
- Lack of Criminal Intent; you did not intend to permanently deprive the owner of their property.
Whether charged as a misdemeanor or as a felony, grand theft carries detrimental consequences. If you find yourself in a situation where you could be charged with grand theft, you should make sure to contact criminal defense attorney Vik Monder. He is a San Diego theft crimes defense attorney that knows how the local law enforcement officers, judges and local prosecutors work, and can use that knowledge to your advantage. To make sure you get the best legal scenario possible, you should talk to Attorney Vik Monder, he has ample experience dealing with these cases and has proven results is San Diego. Call the Monder Law Group today to take the first step towards getting your life back at 619-405-0063.