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Types of Theft Charges in Texas

Texas theft laws are strict, and you do not even have to take something directly from another person to be accused. Theft laws in Texas define larceny and theft as any action that takes property with the intention of depriving the owner of that asset or property.

If someone is presented with property they think is stolen, for example, and takes that item without checking its origin, they may be convicted under theft laws in Texas. These laws allow you to be charged whether the value of the property is large or small.

Types of Theft Charges in Texas

Theft charges in Texas and their penalties vary depending on the value of goods stolen. Defendants may face the following charges:

  • Class A Misdemeanor: If the property in question was valued at over $500 but no more than $1500, this charge is likely and can lead to fines of up to $4000 and a year of jail.
  • Class B Misdemeanor: This is the charge most likely if the property is between $50 and $100 in value or in situations where the stolen property is ID. Penalties include fines of up to $2000 and up to 180 days in jail.
  • Class C Misdemeanor: This is the charge for theft of no more than $50. Penalties are usually fines of up to $500.
  • First-Degree Felony: If a defendant steals property that is $20,000 to $100,000 in value, they may face fines of up to $10,000 and two to 10 years in prison.
  • Second-Degree Felony: When the stolen property is between $100,000 and $200,000 in value, defendants may face sentences of two to 20 years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.
  • Third-Degree Felony: If the property stolen is worth at least $200,000, defendants may face up to 99 years in jail and fines of up to $10,000.
  • State Jail Felony: This is the expected charge for stolen property under $20,000 but over $1500. Penalties for this charge include fines of up to $10,000 and up to 180 days in jail.

In addition to court penalties, those who have been accused of theft may also be charged in civil court by the property owners.

Charges may be more severe in cases where the defendant is a Medicare provider, contractor for the government or public servant. Penalties may also be more severe in cases where a defendant has previous convictions for theft.

What Can I Do If I Have Been Charged With Theft?

If you are facing charges, it is important to act quickly. Theft charges are serious in Texas and can mean significant fines and jail time. As soon as possible, contact a defense attorney in Texas.

There are multiple possible defenses for theft in Texas. If you can prove there was no intent or if the item was not stolen, for example, the theft charges do not apply. In some situations, defendants may be able to prove they took something under threat of harm to themselves or a loved one. In these cases, charges may not apply.

To start discussing defense and your future, contact Morales & Sparks for a consultation. Our compassionate team works with people like you to help them face any possible charges in court.