Bucks County Theft Defense Lawyer
How is Theft Defined in Pennsylvania?
While the common law offense is typically termed larceny, the Pennsylvania Crime Code define this crime as theft. Theft in Pennsylvania can include:
- Theft by deception – Theft by deception occurs when a person misleads or tricks another to withhold the deceived individual’s lawfully held property.
- Theft of services – Theft of services occurs when a person obtains a service of value – as opposed to goods – without lawfully compensating the provider of the service or services.
- Theft by extortion – If a person intentionally obtains the property of another by committing another criminal offense, accusing another of committing a criminal offense, attempt to embarrass a person by revealing confidential information, or through other means theft by extortion may be charged.
Defenses to theft charges include lack of intent, duress, consent, entrapment, and duress.
Penalties for Theft in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania handles crime classification with different language, though the idea of classification based on severity is the same. These terms are analogous to the more commonly-known felony and misdemeanor classifications, which Pennsylvania applies. Depending on the seriousness of the offense, a theft can be classified as either DP/petty/misdemeanor, or indictable/felony.
It’s important to note that not only is committing theft considered a theft crime, but also receiving stolen goods. Theft can apply to property or services (e.g. stealing cable) in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.
In Pennsylvania, crimes of theft are either misdemeanor offenses, or felony offenses. Again, the predominant factor in classification is value of the property stolen, but additional factors can come into play.
- Value: $50-$199
- Classification: 2nd Degree Misdemeanor
- Maximum Sentence: Two years
- Maximum Fine: $5,000
- Value: $200-$2,000
- Classification: 1st Degree Misdemeanor
- Maximum Sentence: Five years
- Maximum Fine: $10,000
- Value: $2,001 and higher
- Classification: 3rd Degree Felony
- Maximum Sentence: Seven years
- Maximum Fine: $15,000
Theft as a 2nd Degree or 1st Degree Felony is determined not by financial value, but by outside factors. For example, theft becomes a 2nd Degree Felony when:
- The theft is committed during a disaster (war, or a natural disaster).
- The property is a gun.
For a 2nd Degree Felony:
- Maximum Sentence: 10 years
- Maximum Fine: $25,000
Theft Becomes a 1st Degree Felony when:
- An individual receives a stolen gun, and is in the business of buying and selling stolen property (e.g. a black market arms dealer).
For a 1st Degree Felony:
- Maximum Sentence: 20 years
- Maximum Fine: $25,000
NO JAIL TIME
Commonwealth v. "H" (DUI case)
Client was charged with three separate DUI cases calling for mandatory minimum imprisonment of 90 days on each case. Client was advised to seek immediate intensive alcohol counseling. Client was sentenced to 1 year of house arrest after serving 3 days in the county prison.
Commonwealth v. "C" (Felony drug/Firearms case)
Client was charged with felony Delivery of drugs and illegal gun possession and was facing a mandatory 3-6 year prison sentence in the State prison system. Client was sentenced to one year of house arrest.
Commonwealth v. "S"
Client was charged with simple assault, domestic. After a hearing where evidence and testimony was presented, the entire case was dismissed by Judge Leonard Brown.
State of New Jersey v. "H"
Charges for young man charged with second degree aggravated assault were downgraded to third degree and he was accepted into the County Pretrial Intervention program with charges to be dismissed and record expunged after one year of misconduct free behavior.
OUR CRIMINAL DEFENSE TEAM INCLUDES TWO FORMER DISTRICT ATTORNEYS
We have decades of experience dealing with local police departments, prosecutors, and judges throughout southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Anyone facing charges involving a criminal offense can expect to experience a heightened degree of emotional turmoil, for themselves, as well as their family members. Our team of highly qualified criminal law attorneys and expert legal support staff are committed to providing each of our client’s with the compassion and understanding they deserve, as well as an aggressive plan for representation at an affordable price.
As former prosecutors, we have a balanced and in-depth understanding of the criminal justice system and how the prosecution prepares cases. In addition, we have long-standing experience dealing with local police departments, prosecutors and judges throughout southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
At Young, Marr and Associates, when we say “experience matters,” we mean it. Our lawyers, which include two former prosecutors and a former senior deputy district attorney bring more than three decades of criminal law experience, handling more than 10,000 criminal cases. It is precisely that experience that allows us to achieve outstanding results for our clients facing DUI, traffic, felony and misdemeanor charges in state, federal and juvenile courts.