Crestview Theft Attorney
If you were arrested for Theft in Crestview, you have just been through a humiliating process. Whether you were arrested and booked at the jail, or released with a Notice to Appear, you still had to see everyone looking at you and judging you. If you hated that feeling, take steps now to make sure you never have to feel that way again.
My name is Tim Flaherty. I’m a criminal defense attorney in Crestview. Since 2001, I’ve been defending locals, military members, and visitors who have been accused of a theft crime. I offer a free consultation, so give me a call at (850) 243-6097, and let’s start working on putting this embarrassing incident behind you.
Common Theft offenses in Crestview
In Crestview, the 2 most common Theft charges are Retail Theft (Shoplifting), and Grand Theft. Shoplifting is usually a misdemeanor, and Grand Theft is always a felony. For more information about either of those charges, you can click the link below:
What is Theft under Florida law?
Florida Statute 812.014 provides the legal definition of Theft. The State must prove these two elements beyond a reasonable doubt before someone can be convicted of theft:
- Defendant knowingly and unlawfully obtained or used the property of the victim.
- Defendant did so with intent to, either temporarily or permanently, (a) deprive a victim of his right to the property or any benefit from it, or (b) appropriate the property for his or her own use, or to the use of any person not entitled to it.
A Theft charge can either be a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the value of the property in question.
Defenses to a Crestview Theft Accusation
At this stage of the case, nothing has been decided yet. No conviction has been entered against you. That means you still have a chance at avoiding a permanent conviction on your record.
My approach to defending Theft cases is to look at the elements of the offense and see where we can poke holes in the State’s theory of the case. Here are a few examples:
- Did the alleged victim own the property?
- What evidence does the State have to prove the property was stolen?
- Can the State prove that you had the intent to steal the property?
- Did you have a legitimate right to the property?
- What is the value of the property?
- Is the property recoverable?
Are there any options if I can’t “win” the case, but I still want to keep this off my record?
First of all, I always look to see if there is a way to win the case. If I can get the case dismissed, you move on with your life with a clean slate.
In cases where the facts and circumstances don’t allow for a complete dismissal, there are still options that end up with the same result. One of those options is a program called Pretrial Diversion. With a pretrial diversion agreement, you and the State agree, in writing, to a set of conditions that you will complete. If you complete those conditions, and don’t get arrested again, the State agrees to dismiss the case.
If the case is dismissed, and you don’t have any other convictions on your record, you may also be eligible for a Record Expungment. An expungment removes your arrest from public record so it wont show up on your record.
Once the case is dismissed and expunged, you will truly have a fresh start with a clean slate.