Theft Crimes

In the State of California, there are two distinguishable types of theft crimes (aka “larceny”):

  • Petty Theft – California petty theft is defined as the stealing of property that has been valued up to $950 (Penal Code 484 and 488). The first offense is considered a misdemeanor; under Penal Code 666 (Petty Theft with a Prior), a second offense can be charged as a felony
  • Grand Theft – California grand theft is defined under Section 487 of the California Penal Code is the unlawful taking, with the intent to steal, of the following:

    Money, valuing over $950
    Labor, valuing over $950
    Property, valuing over $950
    Farm products (including domestic crops and fowl), valuing over $250

As you can see, the value of the property will determine the classification of theft (grand or petty). The number of offenses will determine whether it is considered a misdemeanor or felony. While Grand Theft is more serious than Petty Theft, being charged or arrested for either type of larceny is a serious offense.

Shoplifting: Theft Crimes

Shoplifting can be a form of either petty theft or grand theft, depending on the value of the item that was stolen; however, shoplifting is a theft crime that is specific to theft of store merchandise.

  • For shoplifting to occur, the shoplifter need not exit the store; he or she needs to exhibit signs with the intent to steal, such as placing an item in his or her bag or purse, changing or removing price tags and/or sensors, and other behavior consistent with demonstrating the intent to steal.

California Theft Crimes Attorney

Ronald A. Ziff, a former California Prosecutor, takes California theft crimes very seriously. His no nonsense approach, coupled with decades of California criminal defense experience gives Mr. Ziff the winning edge over other attorneys. He knows the law inside and out. Your case will be thoroughly investigated, and your rights will be aggressively defended.

Contact Us

For more information about California theft crimes, criminal defense attorney Ronald A. Ziff, or to schedule an appointment, please contact the law firm office today.