To discover the definition of theft in Georgia and the penalties you may face if have been charged with theft crimes, continue reading and reach out to our experienced Georgia criminal defense attorney.
How is theft defined in Georgia?
Georgia defines theft by the following terms: theft by taking, theft by deception, theft by conversation, or theft by extortion.
- Taking: An example of taking is physically taking someone else’s wallet or electronically stealing money from an account.
- Deception: Theft by deception involves tricking an individual into wiring money to claim a false prize.
- Conversion: Theft by conversion involves a person who turns their lawful use of property into an unlawful use. This may include an adult child using an elderly parent’s money.
- Extortion: Theft by extortion involves an individual unlawfully obtaining property by threat of bodily harm, defamation, or other types of legal consequence.
What are the penalties for theft crimes in Georiga?
Theft charges in Georgia are punishable according to the value of the stolen property or services. Certain theft offenses such as theft by extortion hold separate penalties.
When an individual steals property or services valued at $1,5000 or less, they will face misdemeanor charges. Misdemeanor theft is punishable by up to 12 months in jail and a $1,000 fine. However, if the person has two or more prior theft convictions, this will increase the misdemeanor to a felony wobbler. This means that the judge has the choice to either improve the misdemeanor jail sentence or a felony prison sentence which is one to five years.
When an individual steals property or services valued at more than $1,500 and less than $5,000, they will face a prison sentence of one to five years. However, if the value of the stolen property or services is over $5,000 and less than $25,000, the individual will face one to 10 years in prison. These offenses are considered wobbler offenses. This means that the judge can skip the felony penalties and sentence the defendant to a misdemeanor.
There are a variety of different theft offenses that can result in the individual facing felony penalties. The following offenses will bring felony penalties:
- Theft involving a breach of duties by a government or financial institution officer or employee will result in the individual facing one to 15 years of incarceration
- Theft of property or services valued at $25,000 or more will result in the individual facing two to 20 years of incarceration
- Theft of a firearm, explosive, or destructive device will result in the individual facing one to 10 years of incarceration
- Theft involving a gravesite or memorial will result in the individual facing one to three years of incarceration
- Theft of property involving a breach of a fiduciary obligation will result in the individual facing one to 15 years of incarceration
- Theft of any amount of anhydrous ammonia will result in the individual facing one to 10 years of incarceration
- Theft by deception of any property worth more than $500 against an individual who is 65 or older will result in the individual facing five to 10 years of incarceration
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At the Miller Law Practice, we support clients through a variety of legal matters. If you are facing criminal charges, or have been injured due to the negligence of another party, our firm will fight for you. Contact Miller Law Practice today.