Theft Crimes Attorney Ocala
Theft is a common crime, but that doesn’t make it a minor one. Some cases of theft involve thousands of dollars in stolen property, such as vehicles. In this case, theft can be a felony, threatening your job prospects, criminal record, and freedom.
You don’t want to tackle the legal system alone, especially if you have a prior criminal record or hold an important position in your community. Even one misstep could result in time behind bars, fines, and damage to your reputation. A theft crimes attorney from our Ocala team can handle your case, preserve your freedom, and fight for a just outcome.
Meldon Law advocates for those going against the criminal justice system. We offer free case reviews where you can meet our team and learn more. Call (352) 373-8000.
What Makes Meldon Law Different From Other Ocala Defense Firms?
Our criminal defense lawyers are deeply committed to the communities we serve. Our team is full of proud Florida residents, many of whom have resided in the Sunshine State for more than 50 years. Here, we pride ourselves on a simple motto: Meldon Law CARES. This means every client benefits from our team’s:
- Compassion. Your Ocala defense lawyer isn’t just invested in your case’s outcome; they’re invested in your personal well-being. You can expect empathy and understanding, regular updates on your case’s progression, and advice on your legal options.
- Accountability. We hold ourselves accountable for everything that happens with your case, from evidence collection to witness testimony.
- Reliability. Your theft defense attorney will be there when you expect them to be. Upon entrusting your case to our team, you get your attorney’s contact information for easy access.
- Excellence. There’s a reason why we’re the official law firm partner of the Florida Gators—we get results for our clients.
- Success-driven results. Your attorney is motivated to secure the best possible outcome. We aim for an acquittal or “not guilty” verdict and nothing less.
We take on your case like it involves one of our own family members. Let our family fight for yours.
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Our Ocala Theft Crimes Team Protects You From These Penalties
The penalties for your criminal case depend on your situation, namely, the value of the item(s) allegedly stolen. Meldon Law protects its clients from the penalties associated with:
- Second-degree petit theft. This is the most minor theft offense in Florida. Also known as petty theft, it refers to stolen property valued at under $100. This is a second-degree misdemeanor, which is punishable by 60 days in jail and a fine of $500.
- First-degree petit theft. This is for stolen property valued between $100 and $750. This is a first-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a $1,000 fine and one year in prison.
- Third-degree grand theft. This is a third-degree felony and includes theft of wills, firearms, motor vehicles, commercially farmed animals––any property valued between $750 and $20,000. The punishment is a fine of up to $5,000 and five years in prison.
- Second-degree grand theft. This crime involves the theft of:
- Emergency law enforcement or medical equipment valued at $300 or more
- Property valued between $5,000 and $20,000 stolen during a riot or looting
- Any property valued between $20,000 and $100,000
- Cargo valued at under $50,000 that has entered intrastate or interstate commerce
This crime is a second-degree felony and is punishable by 15 years in prison and a fine of $10,000.
- First-degree grand theft. This is the most serious level of theft, and it involves the theft of:
- Any property valued at $100,000 or more
- Cargo valued at more than $50,000 that has entered intrastate or interstate commerce
- A semitrailer used by a law enforcement officer
- Any grand theft that causes more than $1,000 in damage to personal property
This crime is a first-degree felony and is punishable by 30 years in prison and a fine of $10,000.
Other Consequences of a Theft Conviction in Florida
If you’re convicted of theft, you will come face-to-face with another unfortunate reality: a criminal record. Whenever you’re convicted of a crime, it becomes part of a public record that anyone can pull up and see with an internet search. More importantly, employers, lenders, and landlords will almost certainly discover your criminal history when they run detailed background checks.
Even if you’re an upstanding citizen, a theft conviction reflects negatively on your character. Aside from fines and jail time, some collateral consequences of a theft conviction include:
- Being required to disclose your criminal history. Many forms require you to share whether you’ve been convicted of a crime in the past. This could make it difficult to apply to schools and housing opportunities.
- Issues with child custody. If you’re going through a custodial battle, the court could view a conviction as a red flag. A judge may deem you an unfit parent, limiting the time you share with those you love most.
- Threats to your safety. While serving your jail/prison sentence, you may experience threats to your physical safety, along with psychological trauma from the experience. This trauma could follow you for years to come, outlasting the sentence itself.
Our theft crimes lawyers serving Ocala do everything possible to protect your future and keep you safe. We do this by presenting a strong case at trial that aims to secure a positive outcome. If a “not guilty” verdict isn’t possible, we can explore having your charges reduced or taking a plea deal.
Connect With the Ocala Theft Crimes Attorneys from Meldon Law
It’s scary to have your reputation and freedom on the line in criminal court. That’s why your choice of legal representation matters. A theft crimes lawyer who is committed to giving you the best possible legal representation can level the playing field between you and the prosecution.
You are innocent until proven guilty. Let our team help you remain that way. Call (352) 373-8000. Our lawyers don’t back down—and neither should you.