Experienced Theft Lawyer Defending Clients’ Rights in the Seattle Area
In Washington, theft is the act of illegally obtaining or taking control of someone else’s property or services, while having the intent to deny this person of these properties or services.
SKILLED LAWYERS IN KING COUNTY DISCUSS FELONY THEFT
The state of Washington’s law recognizes three degrees of theft. The degree of theft that you may be charged with is determined based on how much the property that you have stolen is worth. The higher the value, the more serious the crime and the potential consequences. It’s important to note identity theft is a separate crime from theft, and carries its own penalties.
First-degree theft – a Class B felony – happens when property valued at $5,000 or more is taken from someone without that person’s permission. What are the potential consequences of a conviction? Theft in the first degree is punishable by up to ten years in prison and a fine of up to $20,000.
Second-degree theft – a Class C felony – occurs when the property taken without permission is valued between $750 and $5,000. Theft in the second degree is punishable by up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
TOP LAW FIRMS IN SEATTLE CAN DEFEND YOU AGAINST MISDEMEANOR THEFT
Theft in the third degree – a gross misdemeanor – occurs when property valued at less than $750 is taken without permission. Theft in the third degree is punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $5,000.
Most shoplifting charges in the Seattle area are third-degree thefts. If you are convicted of shoplifting (or if your minor child is convicted), then you may also be held liable to repay the store or business owner for:
- The retail value of any merchandise that was stolen, up to $2,850. If you are the parent of a minor who shoplifted, the maximum amount that you would have to pay to cover stolen merchandise is $1,425.
- An additional penalty that can range between $100 and $650
- Any attorney or court fees that were incurred by the victim as a result of the shoplifter’s crime
If you are charged with any theft crimes in the Seattle area, don’t waste any time. Contact experienced Seattle theft attorney Kevin Trombold immediately.
CAN I BE CHARGED FOR RECEIVING STOLEN PROPERTY? YES, SAYS SEATTLE ATTORNEYS
The possession of stolen property is a crime in the state of Washington. Can you just give the property back? Unfortunately, that will not resolve the case if you are charged with receiving stolen property. If the stolen property is valued at $5,000 or more, you may be charged with a class B felony, which carries a sentence of up to 10 years in jail and up to a $20,000 fine. If the property is valued between $750 and $5,000, it is considered a class C felony, which carries a sentence of up to 5 years in jail and up to a $10,000 fine. However, if you possess stolen property that is valued at less than $750, it is a gross misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of one year in jail and up to a $5,000 fine.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN BURGLARY, ROBBERY, AND LARCENY?
People often use the terms burglary, robbery, and larceny interchangeably, but they actually refer to three separate crimes. In Washington, burglary is the act of illegally entering a private residence or other structure with the intention of committing some sort of crime while inside. As you can see, burglary does not necessarily mean property is being stolen—although people often break into homes in order to commit the crime of theft.
Robbery and theft both involve the act of taking property that does not belong to you, however there is one difference. Robbery involves the use of force or violence, whereas theft does not. If any force or physical violence was involved in the act, it is considered robbery and not theft.
KING COUNTY LAWYER EXPLAINS THE POSSIBLE OUTCOMES FOR THEFT CASES
There are a number of ways that a theft case can be resolved, from a dismissal to a conviction. The theft attorneys at Law Offices of Kevin Trombold will always fight tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcome.
It is not required that the prosecution move forward with charges. In this situation, the case would be dismissed. The higher the value of the property stolen, the less likely it is that your case will be dismissed. It is also very unlikely that you will have your case dismissed if you have a lengthy criminal record. The most common way that a theft case is dismissed is when it’s a third degree theft. Sometimes, the accused can pay the victim restitution and have the victim tell the judge that he or she does not mind if the charges are dropped. Even if the prosecutor does not agree with the charges being dropped, if it’s the victim’s decision to do so, they cannot object.
You may be found not guilty. If the case moves into a trial phase because the prosecutors will not dismiss it and you have decided not to take a plea deal, you will be found either guilty or not guilty. Always consult with an experienced Seattle theft attorney before making the decision to go to trial. If you are found not guilty, this is essentially the same as a case dismissal, since nothing will go on your record and you will not receive any form of punishment.
You may be convicted of theft. Your lawyer may advise you that it is not wise to move forward with a trial, and may recommend that you take a plea deal instead. In this situation, you will admit guilt in exchange for receiving a lesser charge or lighter sentence. Another way that you can be found guilty of theft is if you do let the case go to trial and the jury determines that you did commit the crime. Either way, you will be sentenced as punishment for committing thievery.
If you or a loved one is charged with theft, it’s imperative that you contact an experienced Seattle theft attorney as soon as possible. The team of attorneys at the Law Offices of Kevin Trombold will immediately begin reviewing your case to determine what legal options you have available to you.
HIRE LEGAL EXCELLENCE WHEN YOU CHOOSE OUR LAW FIRM IN SEATTLE, WA
Washington’s theft law is complicated, and so are the defenses against theft charges. You may be innocent of felony theft or misdemeanor theft, but even if you are guilty as charged, one mistake in judgment – in a stressful situation – shouldn’t be allowed to ruin your life. Many companies hesitate to employ anyone with a recent thievery conviction. If you are a student, a theft conviction can make you ineligible for scholarships and other financial aid, and if you are an immigrant convicted of theft, deportation is a real possibility. If you are charged now or in the future with theft or a theft-related crime in the greater Seattle area, fight the charge, get the legal help you are going to need, and get it immediately. Contact experienced Seattle theft attorney Kevin Trombold at once if you are charged with theft in the first, second, or third degree.
HOW CAN A CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY HELP MY THEFT CASE IN SEATTLE?
A theft conviction can seriously impact your personal life and employment opportunities for years, which is why it’s so important to work with a qualified criminal defense attorney. Seattle theft attorney Kevin Trombold has a team of experienced legal professionals who are ready to aggressively investigate the details of your case and defend your rights. Kevin Trombold has been practicing criminal defense law for over two decades, and has a reputation for helping his clients get their charges reduced, and win dismissals and not guilty verdicts. The team at his law firm has experience in a variety of practice areas, including domestic violence, fraud, drug charges, DUI, and sex crimes. If you are currently facing theft charges in Seattle, Redmond, Kent, Bellevue, or elsewhere in the area, contact the Law Offices of Kevin Trombold. Please reach us by placing a call to our office phone at 206-249-9656 or send us an email by filling out the contact form on this site for an initial free consultation.