Property crimes in the State of California include many common offenses that relate to the theft or destruction of someone else’s property. Crimes against property can range from low-level misdemeanors to general felonies. By definition, a property crime is the theft or damage of another’s property, and does not involve the use of force or threat of force against. In some cases, more serious violent felonies including robbery are considered crimes against property.
Property crimes are the most common crimes committed in California, and after years of declining property crime rates in the state, California has seen an explosion in crimes against property. Experts argue on the exact nature of the increase, but the numbers are clear.
Common Property Crimes Include:
- Petty Theft
- Grand Theft
Property crimes in CA have a wide range of penalties and depending on the offense, can be classified as an infraction, misdemeanor, or felony. For example, trespassing can be charged as an infraction or a misdemeanor depending on the unique attributes of the arrest. The same goes for theft charges, depending on the dollar amount of the items stolen, you can be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony. In California, if the dollar amount exceeds $950 you can be charged with Grand Theft – a felony charge. Often times it is the smallest and seemingly insignificant details of your arrest that will determine whether you face misdemeanor or felony charges.
Many property crimes involve the theft of property and these crimes are categorized based on who/where the items were taken from, whether force was used to enter the premises, and whether any individuals were threatened or put in harms way during the act. Taking an item from a store and walking out with it would likely draw a shoplifting charge. Going to the same store after hours and breaking the window to obtain that same item would likely result in a burglary charge because you unlawfully or forcefully entered the premises with the intent to steal. Going up to the store employee and pointing a gun at them while demanding that same item, would likely bring a robbery charge because you used force or the threat of force against an individual while committing the theft.
It is the smallest details that will determine your level of success when fighting property crime charges. Sacramento criminal attorney at this law firm has the necessary experience to develop a successful defense for individuals charged with a property crime. Please give us a call today for a consultation.