(Includes shoplifting, retail theft, receiving stolen property, credit card fraud.)
If you are charged with a theft related offense, the prosecution has alleged that you intentionally, without claim of right, took another person’s property without their consent and with the intent to permanently deprive them of the possession of the property. If the value of the property taken is $500.00 or less, the offense is classified as misdemeanor theft. If the value of the property is more than $500.00 but less than $1,000.00, the offense is a gross misdemeanor. If the value of the property is $1,000.00 or more, the charge is felony theft. Please remember, a criminal charge is only an allegation made by a prosecutor who may not know all the facts and who may not be able to prove the case. The fact that you are have been charged with a theft offense is not considered evidence against you. The law presumes that you are innocent of committing a theft offense! Before you can even be convicted, the prosecution must prove all of the elements of the theft offense beyond a reasonable doubt. All of the jurors must agree that you are guilty before you can be found guilty.
What are the defenses to a criminal theft charge? How about lack of intent, mistaken identity, inflated property value, invalid search warrant, and lack probable cause to believe you committed the offense.
Are there any plea bargains that won’t result in a criminal conviction? Yes, it may be possible to steer the case out of criminal court and into a theft offender diversion program. Another alternative is to negotiate a stay of adjudication which means that you plead guilty to the theft offense but the court does not accept the plea. If you successfully complete probation, the guilty plea is vacated and the charge dismissed without a criminal conviction.
If you or someone you know needs the assistance of an experienced Minneapolis theft offense attorney, call Robert J. Shane any time, day or night, at (612) 339-1024, or complete the contact form provided on this site to schedule your free consultation.