Dorchester Theft Lawyer
Theft may be either a misdemeanor or a felony in Dorchester, depending upon the value of the items that were allegedly stolen. Any theft offense could potentially result in jail time and a criminal record, so it is a good idea to talk to a Dorchester theft lawyer about what options you have if you have been accused of violating laws prohibiting theft. Call a Maryland criminal lawyer today to discuss your charges and find out how to proceed with your defense.
Why Work with a Dorchester County Theft Attorney?
A defendant should be convicted of a theft offense only after a willfull attempt to intentionally deprive the owner of a property of the property’s value. A defendant may also be convicted for a willful attempt to intentionally deprive someone of the value of services.
There are myriad defenses to theft crimes charges, including entrapment, lack of intent, and a rightful claim of ownership to the property. A Dorchester theft lawyer can help you to raise defenses in court with the goal of getting a not guilty verdict.
You can also be found not guilty if the prosecutor can’t prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. A Dorchester theft lawyer will help to try undermining the case against you. Evidence can be suppressed if it was obtained illegally, and witness testimony can be called into question by raising credibility concerns. The right approach to take will vary based on the specifics of your case, so your Dorchester theft lawyer can help craft a defense tailored to your situation.
There are also opportunities to avoid a criminal record through deferred sentencing, or to negotiate a plea agreement that can sometimes result in minimal penalties. Your Dorchester theft lawyer can advise you on your options, talk to prosecutors on your behalf, and help you fight for the best outcome you can get based on the circumstances.
Theft Laws in Dorchester
Maryland Code Section 7-104 prohibits many behaviors considered theft, including a failure to return property that has been lost or mislaid when the owner could be identified; as well as possessing stolen property. Theft of items valued at less than $1,000 results in misdemeanor charges. If the items are under $100, the maximum penalty is a $500 fine and 90-days incarceration. if the items are over $100 but less than $1,000, the maximum penalty is a $500 fine and 18-months incarceration.
Once stolen items are valued at $1,000 or more, penalties increase dramatically. Theft is considered a felony and the potential penalties range from a maximum 10-year term of imprisonment and $10,000 fine to a maximum of 25 years in prison and a $100,000 fine. The most serious penalties are reserved for theft of items valued at $100,000 or more.
Getting Help from a Dorchester Theft Lawyer
You have the right to defend yourself when you’ve been accused of a theft offense. Mounting a defense requires an understanding of the law. A Dorchester theft lawyer with a past history of representing clients accused of theft offenses can provide advice and assistance as you respond to charges. Call an attorney for help as soon as you have been accused of breaking the law.