If you have been charged with a felony or misdemeanor by either the state or federal government, contact expert criminal defense law firm. At the Law Office of John M. Howe, we the experience, knowledge, and resources to effectively defend you against criminal charges. Securing the services of a high quality criminal defense team can save you months or years of anguish. A leader in the criminal defense and legal communities, Mr. Howe has served as Past-President for the Palm Beach County Bar Association and the Palm Beach Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He served as director of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and currently serves on its executive committee.
WARNING TO NON-U.S. CITIZENS: Be advised, a conviction for any crimes involving theft or dishonesty could nullify your legal status and subject you to deportation. Attorney John M. Howe knows the importance of understanding how laws affect non-U.S. citizens in matters involving theft or dishonesty.
Statutes regarding theft 812.014.
(1) A person commits theft if he or she knowingly obtains or uses, or endeavors to obtain or to use, the property of another with intent to, either temporarily or permanently:
(a) Deprive the other person of a right to the property or a benefit from the property.
(b) Appropriate the property to his or her own use or to the use of any person not entitled to the use of the property.
(2)(a)1. If the property stolen is valued at $100,000 or more or is a semitrailer that was deployed by a law enforcement officer; or
(b) 1. If the property stolen is valued at $20,000 or more, but less than $100,000;
(c) It is grand theft of the third degree and a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084, if the property stolen is:
13. Any amount of a controlled substance as defined in s. 893.02. Notwithstanding any other law, separate judgments and sentences for theft of a controlled substance under this subparagraph and for any applicable possession of controlled substance offense under s. 893.13 or trafficking in controlled substance offense under s. 893.135 may be imposed when all such offenses involve the same amount or amounts of a controlled substance.
However, if the property is stolen within a county that is subject to a state of emergency declared by the Governor under chapter 252, the property is stolen after the declaration of emergency is made, and the perpetration of the theft is facilitated by conditions arising from the emergency, the offender commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084, if the property is valued at $5,000 or more, but less than $10,000, as provided under subparagraph 2., or if the property is valued at $10,000 or more, but less than $20,000, as provided under subparagraph 3. As used in this paragraph, the term “conditions arising from the emergency” means civil unrest, power outages, curfews, voluntary or mandatory evacuations, or a reduction in the presence of or the response time for first responders or homeland security personnel. For purposes of sentencing under chapter 921, a felony offense that is reclassified under this paragraph is ranked one level above the ranking under s. 921.0022 or s. 921.0023 of the offense committed.
(d) It is grand theft of the third degree and a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084, if the property stolen is valued at $100 or more, but less than $300, and is taken from a dwelling as defined in s. 810.011(2) or from the unenclosed curtilage of a dwelling pursuant to s. 810.09(1).
(e) Except as provided in paragraph (d), if the property stolen is valued at $100 or more, but less than $300, the offender commits petit theft of the first degree, punishable as a misdemeanor of the first degree, as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(3)(a) Theft of any property not specified in subsection (2) is petit theft of the second degree and a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, and as provided in subsection (5), as applicable.
(b) A person who commits petit theft and who has previously been convicted of any theft commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(c) A person who commits petit theft and who has previously been convicted two or more times of any theft commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(d)1. Every judgment of guilty or not guilty of a petit theft shall be in writing, signed by the judge, and recorded by the clerk of the circuit court. The judge shall cause to be affixed to every such written judgment of guilty of petit theft, in open court and in the presence of such judge, the fingerprints of the defendant against whom such judgment is rendered. Such fingerprints shall be affixed beneath the judge’s signature to such judgment. Beneath such fingerprints shall be appended a certificate to the following effect:
“I hereby certify that the above and foregoing fingerprints on this judgment are the fingerprints of the defendant, ____, and that they were placed thereon by said defendant in my presence, in open court, this the ____ day of ____, (year) .”
Such certificate shall be signed by the judge, whose signature thereto shall be followed by the word “Judge.”
(4) Failure to comply with the terms of a lease when the lease is for a term of 1 year or longer shall not constitute a violation of this section unless demand for the return of the property leased has been made in writing and the lessee has failed to return the property within 7 days of his or her receipt of the demand for return of the property. A demand mailed by certified or registered mail, evidenced by return receipt, to the last known address of the lessee shall be deemed sufficient and equivalent to the demand having been received by the lessee, whether such demand shall be returned undelivered or not.
(5)(a) No person shall drive a motor vehicle so as to cause it to leave the premises of an establishment at which gasoline offered for retail sale was dispensed into the fuel tank of such motor vehicle unless the payment of authorized charge for the gasoline dispensed has been made.
(b) In addition to the penalties prescribed in paragraph (3)(a), every judgment of guilty of a petit theft for property described in this subsection shall provide for the suspension of the convicted person’s driver’s license. The court shall forward the driver’s license to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles in accordance with s. 322.25.
(6) A person who individually, or in concert with one or more other persons, coordinates the activities of one or more persons in committing theft under this section where the stolen property has a value in excess of $3,000 commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
To discuss how we will fight to protect your rights, contact the Law Office of John M. Howe by filling out our online form or by calling 561-296-7772 or toll-free 866-930-2938. During your first meeting, Mr. Howe will examine your case and determine the best way to help you fight the grand theft charges you are facing.
We are committed to fighting your fight, protecting your rights and the rights of your family to ensure that you receive justice and nothing less.