Miami Theft & Shoplifting Lawyer
The Miami theft lawyers at Ratzan & Faccidomo represent individuals accused of all manner of theft crimes in Florida, including shoplifting, petit theft and grand theft. Theft offenses can be charged as misdemeanor or felony offenses, subjecting a convicted offender to steep fines and jail time or lengthy prison sentences. In addition, convicted offenders can be made to return stolen property or make restitution to the property owner, and may be civilly liable in damages to the property owner as well. We help individuals charged with all of the following offenses, among others:
- Petit Theft
- Uttering a Forged Instrument
- Check Kiting
- Felony Grand Theft
Is Theft a Misdemeanor or a Felony under Florida Law?
In most cases, the value of the property stolen determines whether the offense is charged as a felony or misdemeanor and in what degree. Generally speaking, property valued at $300 or more amounts to felony grand theft, but a theft involving property as low as $100 can be a felony in certain instances. Also, stealing certain types of property is a felony, regardless of its value. For instance, stealing a fire extinguisher is felony grand theft. Conviction of a felony offense can result in a prison sentence of a year or more and can lead to the loss of civil rights and privileges and make it difficult to get or keep a job or professional license.
Even shoplifting can be charged as a felony, depending upon the value of the property involved. Shoplifting arrests usually occur when some worker in a store, who may or may not be the store’s security guard or “loss prevention officer,” sees someone take something and handle it in a way that makes the worker think that they are not intending to pay for it. Often times the facts are not as they are portrayed to be by the store personnel, but the person arrested is too frightened or embarrassed and unknowingly waives important rights, incriminates himself or herself, or otherwise fails to properly protect their rights and defend themselves. Fortunately, an experienced Miami theft defense lawyer may be able to help you avoid prosecution, get your record expunged, or bring about some other favorable outcome.
Defend Your Rights and Protect Your Future with an Experienced Miami Theft Lawyer
There are often many defenses available to shoplifting or theft crimes, such as whether the person had the intent to steal, and the prosecution must prove every element of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt to a unanimous jury. There may also be lesser offenses than the one charged that will result in a lesser penalty if convicted. A skilled, knowledgeable and aggressive lawyer can help you get the best result possible if you are arrested for a theft crime. Contact Ratzan & Faccidomo for a free consultation with experienced Miami theft & shoplifting lawyers.