Theft is considered a crime of dishonesty, often deemed an act of immorality When you are convicted of theft, your professional license, credit opportunities, and daily life could dramatically deteriorate.
Contact an experienced criminal attorney immediately after a prosecutor charges you with theft. You do not have to face the jury alone. A skilled Lawrence theft lawyer at Addair Law could review the prosecutor’s evidence, listen to your side of the story, and execute a vigorous defense to give you a greater chance of a favorable case outcome.
Understanding The Theft Statute
Theft permanently deprives a rightful owner of their property’s use, possession, or benefit. Kansas Statute § 21-5801 designates theft as a non-person crime, meaning the law deems theft as non-violent.
Theft usually occurs when someone takes property or services through deception or force. The law also punishes those who receive items they know someone else stole.
The exact nature of a theft crime depends on the details of a case. A well-versed Lawrence theft attorney could defend various theft allegations— shoplifting, embezzlement, or identity theft.
Legal Implications of a Theft Crime
State law classifies theft either as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the situation. A theft lawyer in Lawrence could help a defendant understand the charges they are facing and build a tailored defense.
Class A Misdemeanor
When the value of the property or service is less than $1,500, the associated theft charge is usually a Class A non-person misdemeanor. Misdemeanor theft carries a maximum jail sentence of one year and a $2,500 fine.
Level 9 Felony
If the property or services value exceeds $1,500 but is less than $25,000, the crime is a Level 9 felony. However, a defendant could also face Level 9 felony charges if they:
- Allegedly stole a gun worth less than $25,000
- Have two prior theft convictions over the past five years
- Allegedly stole from three or more parties over 72 hours as part of a concerted scheme
A conviction for a Level 9 felony carries a potential prison sentence of between five and 17 months.
Level 7 Felony
A person faces a Level 7 felony charge when the value of the property or services they allegedly stole exceeds $25,000 but is less than $100,000. The potential prison sentence for a Level 7 felony is 11 to 34 months.
Level 5 Felony
Someone accused of stealing items worth over $100,000 faces a Level 5 felony charge. The prison sentence for a Level 5 felony ranges from a minimum of 31 months to a maximum of 106 months.
What To Do When Accused of Theft
Anyone arrested or under investigation for a theft charge should not speak with security guards, investigators, or law enforcement personnel without legal representation present. Prosecutors could use a suspect’s statements against them in court. A strong strategy is to remain silent until a defense attorney from Addair Law is present.
A seasoned attorney could question whether investigators respected the suspect’s rights. Legal professionals know how to review the investigation notes, arrest records, and the defendant’s recollections to verify that law enforcement officers’ conduct was justifiable. A skilled theft lawyer in Lawrence could convince a judge to dismiss a charge or suppress illegally retained evidence.
Receive Help From a Skilled Lawrence Theft Attorney
Theft accusations are frightening. However, you do not have to endure this challenging time without help. At Addair Law, we believe that you deserve a thorough defense. A professional from our firm could wield their skills and experience to defeat a theft charge against you.
Do not assume you can avoid life-altering consequences by yourself. A Lawrence theft lawyer is your greatest ally and is here to defend you. Call immediately to receive assistance for your case.