Theft Crimes in San Diego
Theft is the unlawful taking of another person’s property. There are a variety of different theft crimes in San Diego, some common theft crimes are as follows:
- Burglary under PC 459; entering a structure with the intent to commit a theft therein.
- Carjacking under PC 215; using force or fear to take a vehicle from someone’s immediate possession.
- Robbery under PC 211; using violence, force, or threats to take property from someone’s immediate possession.
- Receiving stolen property under PC 496; purchasing or receiving property that is known to be stolen.
- Embezzlement under PC 503; stealing from another while in a position of trust with that person.
- Petty Theft under PC 484 and 488; the stealing of property valued up to $950, most commonly based on shoplifting.
- Grand Theft under PC 487; the stealing of property valued at more than $950.
There Are Different Ways to Commit Theft
By Larceny:Stealing and carrying away another’s property without consent.
By Trick:Deceiving a person to get them to let you take their property.
By Embezzlement:Depriving another person of something that was entrusted to you.
By False Pretenses:Making false representations to obtain possession of another's property.
Theft Crimes: Prosecution's Burden of Proof
Theft is defined as a criminal act in which property belonging to another is taken without that person’s consent. Basically, to convict someone of a theft crime, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
- Unauthorized taking or keeping or using of another’s property;
- Without consent;
- With the specific intent to permanently take or withhold the property owner’s possession or right to the property;
- The defendant moved the property and kept it for a period of time.
Determining Factors for Misdemeanor or Felony TheftThe following are factors that the issuing attorney at the District Attorney's office will use to determine the severity of the charges for theft:
The Type of Property Stolen:
If the property is a car or a firearm, the values the property is worth does not matter.
The theft of these items is considered grand theft and can be convicted as a felony.
The Value of the Property Stolen:
The less value the property is worth, under $950, the more likely a misdemeanor charge.
The higher the value the property is worth, over $950, the more likely a felony charge.
The Age of the Victim:
If the victim is a dependent or elderly person.
The Defendant's Criminal History:
If the defendant has any prior criminal history even if unrelated to theft, could still have an affect on sentencing.
Misdemeanor Theft Crimes
- Petty Theft
Wobbler Theft Crimes
- Grand Theft Auto
- Second Degree Burglary
- Receiving Stolen Property
Felony Theft Crimes
- First Degree Burglary
- Grand Theft
- First Degree Robbery
- Second Degree Robbery
- Car Jacking
Penalties for Theft Crimes
- Fines anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000;
- Sentences anywhere from 6 months in county jail to 20 years in state prison;
- Informal and formal probation depending on the charge;
- Sentencing for repeat offenders could result in a felony as opposed to a misdemeanor;
- Repay the value of the merchandise which was allegedly stolen;
- Complete an agreed to number of community service hours;
- Attend anti-theft classes.
Enhancements for Theft Crimes
An enhancement offense is an offense whose commission alone increases the penalties for the original crime. In addition to the penalties noted above, a person can receive an additional state prison sentence for any of the following:
- One year if the amount of the stolen property was worth more than $65,00.00.
- Two years if the amount of the stolen property was worth more than $200,000.00.
- Three years if the amount of the stolen property was worth more than $1,300,000.00.
- Four years if the amount of the stolen property was worth more than $3,200,000.00.
- Three to six years if a person received a great bodily injury in the process of the offense.
- Ten years if the offense involved a gun.
- Twenty years if the gun was discharged during the offense.
- Twenty-five years if a person is injured or killed with a gun during the offense.
Most theft crimes are wobblers, this means that the issuing attorney at the District Attorney's Office has discretion whether to file misdemeanor or felony charges. This kind of power gives the prosecution the ability to decide the sentences you will face if convicted of the charges against you. The sentences involved with theft crimes result in serious time, don't throw away your life! Take control of your future by contacting experienced San Diego criminal defense attorney Vik Monder at (619)405-0063.