Theft occurs when you take something without the intention of returning it, or only agree to return an item once you’ve received something else that you’re not legally entitled to.
In Texas, the value of the property stolen is the primary determinant of what punishment you will receive.
- Less than $50: Class C misdemeanor carrying no more than a $500 fine
- Between $50 – $500: Class B misdemeanor carrying no more than 180 days in jail and $2,000 in fines
- Between $500 – $1,500: Class A misdemeanor carrying no more than 1 year in jail and $4,000 in fines
- Between $1,500 – $20,000: State jail felony carrying from 180 days to 2 years in jail and no more than $10,000 in fines
- Between $20,000 – $100,000: Third-degree felony carrying from 2 to 10 years in jail and no more than $10,000 in fines
- Between $100,000 – $200,000: Second-degree felony carrying from 2 to 20 years in jail and no more than $10,000 in fines
- Over $200,000: First-degree felony carrying from 5 to 99 years in jail and no more than $10,000 in fines
The punishment for theft also depends on the individual circumstances surrounding the case. A premeditated theft, for instance, will likely carry a harsher sentence than a theft committed on impulse. Moreover, judges are usually harder on those convicted of stealing from weaker individuals such as the elderly or children.
If you’ve been charged with theft, you need an experienced Austin theft defense attorney to represent your case and make sure you’re treated fairly. Contact the Kyle Law Firm today for a free consultation.