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Annapolis Theft Lawyer

Theft is a very serious charge in Annapolis and as such carries the possibility of anywhere between a 90-day penalty for the least serious kinds of theft to decades in jail for more serious felony theft charges. As a result, it is imperative that anyone accused of theft consult with an Annapolis theft attorney to ensure that the penalties are minimized as much as possible. As an experienced defense attorney in Annapolis can look at the facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged crime and help both, prepare the defendant for what they should expect, and build a strong defense.

Where Theft Cases Are Heard

Theft cases start at the district court level with the least serious kinds of theft offenses like small shoplifting offenses and go all the way up into Annapolis Circuit Court where more serious felony-related theft charges are handled. These include large dollar amounts of more than $1,000 to more than $100,000.

Due to the difference in court room procedure and potential penalties that an individual could face if convicted, a theft lawyer in Annapolis is imperative.

Consequences of Theft

One thing that people do not think about when it comes to theft charges is the fact that when they are charged with an allegation of theft, they are not only dealing with the crime itself, they are also dealing with potential collateral consequences of the theft charge that may occur later.

Theft is considered a crime of moral turpitude, which means it is a crime that calls into question the trustworthiness or good character of the convicted individual. A person who has a criminal record for a theft charge might have more difficulties in the future in gaining employment or other kinds of benefits from society. Someone with convictions for other kinds of offenses like minor drug possession or DUI might not face those consequences because those criminal charges are not charges of moral turpitude, whereas a theft charge is.

As a result, theft charges must be handled with extreme care by an experienced Annapolis theft attorney because keeping an individual’s record clear of a theft offense could be very beneficial to them in their future when it comes to collateral consequences they might face.

Alternative Sentencing

Almost every court system in Maryland, including Annapolis, has diversion programs available for people charged with misdemeanor theft. The charges could be completely dismissed if the charged individual does certain things the court requires, such as community service or taking some kind of online moral training classes to make sure that something like this does not happen again. A theft attorney in Maryland who is familiar with that jurisdiction can help explain those options to their client so that they can potentially keep their record clear of the incident.

Consulting With An Attorney

One of the first things a person should expect from an initial consultation is that their Annapolis theft attorney will review all of the details of the events with them to understand the case from their perspective. Often, with theft cases, the reports are written from the perspective of the store, or the person who alleged theft, if it was not a store.

The reports are very one-sided, and often there is a great deal of information provided by the client that outlines exactly what took place in that particular occasion. If there are viable defenses or something was simply a mistake or an error, that information can be of tremendous assistance in trying to get the charges dismissed quickly and easily.