Misdemeanor Theft and Felony Theft
Theft crimes are addressed in RCW 9A.56. Theft means to wrongfully obtain or exert unauthorized control over the property or services of another with the intent to deprive the person of his/her property or services. It can also mean that by color or aid of deception to obtain control over the property or services of another with intent to deprive. Lastly it can mean the appropriation of lost or mis-delivered property or services of another with intent to deprive.
The level of theft depends on the value of the property or services taken. Theft in the first degree (RCW 9A.56.030) is a class B felony and involves property valued over Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00). Theft in the second degree (RCW 9A.56.040) is a class C felony and involves property valued over Seven Hundred and Fifty Dollars ($750.00) but less than Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00). Theft in the third degree (RCW 9A.56.050) is a gross misdemeanor and involves property valued less than Seven Hundred and Fifty Dollars ($750.00).
It is a defense that the property or services were appropriated openly and with a claim of title made in good faith.
Theft allegations rely heavily on the state of mind of the person taking the property. It is important, when facing a theft investigation or theft charges, to remain silent. Do not confirm or deny any aspect of the theft allegation. Call Padula & Associates as soon as you realize you are under investigation for theft. We will guide you through the investigation process and stand by you to fight the criminal prosecution.