While you might not consider car theft to be a major crime, grand theft auto charges can result in serious penalties.If you find yourself facing the charges, you could be looking at jail time and high fines. However, you might be able to minimize the damage. It all depends on the circumstances of your arrest and the skill of your grand theft auto criminal lawyer. Learn all about grand theft auto charges and how a lawyer can help you.
What is Grand Theft Auto?
Grand theft is a serious crime that involves the theft of an item that costs more than a certain amount. In some states, that amount is $1000. However, the amount varies according to your state laws. If you steal something worth less than the value, you could face petty theft.
As you might imagine, grand theft auto charges occur when you steal a vehicle that costs more than a predetermined value. While some people get felony convictions for grand theft auto charges, you may only get a misdemeanor. This depends on what occurred during the crime, whether you have any prior convictions and the skill of your grand theft auto criminal lawyer.
When you face these charges, you may also have other charges that come with the crime. For example, breaking into a car could result in auto burglary charges. If you broke into a home or garage to steal the car, you could face burglary charges. When you use force to steal a vehicle, there could be robbery charges.
There is another charge similar to grand theft auto. However, it is less serious than grand theft and has fewer penalties. If you steal a vehicle, you could face the unlawful taking or driving of a vehicle charges. In some places, you might know of this as joyriding.
Joyriding vs GTA
If a prosecutor wants to convict you of grand theft auto charges, he needs to prove that you intended to take the stolen vehicle permanently. Whether you wanted to keep it or sell it is irrelevant – what matters is that you had no intention of returning the vehicle.
Joyriding differs from grand theft auto in that you planned to return the vehicle. More specifically, you only took the vehicle on a temporary basis. If your grand theft auto criminal lawyer can prove this, you could face minimal penalties. You could face other charges, like burglary, but the crime is still less serious than grand theft auto.
The Severity and Complexity of the Charges
Grand theft auto charges have serious implications. With years of jail time and high fines at stake, you have a lot to lose. If you face any additional charges, you could have even more jail time and higher fines. You need a layer to examine your case and determine how to fight the charges.
Grand theft auto is a complex issue. Because of this, you need a lawyer with experience fighting these charges. Only an experienced lawyer understands all the ways to fight GTA charges. With his help, you could avoid years in jail and a conviction on your criminal record.
Fighting Grand Theft Auto Charges
There are several ways that a lawyer can fight grand theft auto charges. One of the most common ways is to prove that the vehicle owner consented to you taking the vehicle. If the owner gave you permission to take it, then there was no crime. While this can be an effective defense, it needs to be true. Proving that someone permitted you to take their vehicle can be difficult. To make the defense work, your lawyer needs some evidence to support it.
Another defense is to prove that you planned to take the car on a temporary basis. If your lawyer can show that you had no plans for a long-term theft, then the crime was joyriding. Instead of facing felony charges, you could face misdemeanor charges. Your grand theft auto could become a simple case of joyriding.
When a vehicle is worth less than the mandatory value for grand theft, you do not deserve to face grand theft charges. In some criminal trials, lawyers prove that their defendants stole less than the value for grand theft. Sometimes, the value of the vehicle is less than the court thinks or less than the police report states. When the market value of a vehicle is wrong, your lawyer can prove that the vehicle was actually less than the mandatory value. Instead of grand theft, you could face petty theft charges.
In many arrests, the police stray from protocol. For example, the arresting officer could forget to read you your Miranda Rights. When something like this occurs, your lawyer may be able to reduce your charges. He may even be able to convince a judge to dismiss the charges completely. Depending on the police misconduct, you could find yourself free of any charges.
In any case, you can fight your grand theft charges. All you need is a lawyer to help you.