Facing Burglary, Robbery or Theft Charges?

Dallas Criminal Lawyer Christy Harris Can Help

Photo of handcuffs after a Dallas robbery

A conviction for theft under Texas law, and especially more grave convictions such as burglary and robbery, can cause you to pay court fines and restitution to the victim, as well as serve substantial terms of incarceration. Furthermore, a theft conviction, particularly if it is a felony conviction, can mar your chances for gainful employment and other opportunities. As a result, you cannot take any potential theft investigation or charge too seriously. An essential part of taking these criminal charges seriously is immediately seeking the services of Dallas criminal defense attorney Christy Harris. Former prosecutor turned Dallas criminal attorney Christy Harris has the expertise that you need in order to avoid a damaging theft conviction.

Burglary in the State of Texas

Under Texas law, burglary is the unauthorized entry into any structure, including a home or place of business, with the intent of committing a crime. In order to commit burglary, you need not intend to commit the crimes of theft and/or larceny, but only to commit any crime. Likewise, you may be guilty of burglary even if you do not forcibly break into the structure. Simply entering a structure without permission, even if through an open door, can constitute the crime of burglary. Unlike the crime of robbery, burglary does not typically involve any threats or violence to a victim. Rather, in most cases, a victim is not even present during the commission of the burglary.

Robbery under Texas Law

Robbery in the state of Texas involves the theft of possessions or money from an individual or business by using physical force or threats of force. If the perpetrator of the robbery uses a gun or another type of deadly weapon, the prosecutor may charge the crime as aggravated robbery or armed robbery, which carries more serious penalties than a regular burglary charge. In the case of robbery, at least one victim is present and may suffer physical harm or verbal threats.

Theft and the Law in Texas

Theft occurs under Texas law whenever a person takes an item of personal property belonging to another, without permission to do so and with no intentions of paying for it. While theft encompasses minor crimes, such as shoplifting and writing bad checks, it also includes other serious crimes such as burglary, robbery, larceny and possession of stolen property. Therefore, theft is actually a broad category of crimes that range from rather minor to very serious, such as embezzlement.

A theft crime may constitute either a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the value of the personal property involved. In most cases, theft is a misdemeanor if the personal property is worth $500 or less, and it is a felony if the personal property is worth more than $500. Similarly, petty larceny entails an item of a relatively low value, and is a misdemeanor charge, whereas grand larceny concerns an item of higher value, and is a felony charge.

Penalties for Theft Crimes in the State of Texas

Just as the charge for a theft crime depends on the value of the items stolen, the penalties for a theft crime vary according to the items’ values. Theft charges can range from a Class C misdemeanor for items worth less than $50, which can result in up to a $500 fine, to a first-degree felony for items worth over $200,000, which can result in 5 to 99 years in state prison, and up to a $10,000 fine. In any type of theft conviction, you may also have to pay restitution to the victim, which means that you have to reimburse him or her for the value of the items stolen.

Avoid the potentially severe consequences of a burglary, robbery or theft conviction by calling on Dallas criminal lawyer Christy Harris today for help. Do not delay in getting the assistance that you need to avoid a wrongful conviction, one that will negatively affect all aspects of your life. Contact the Law Office of Christine Harris as soon as possible for the aggressive representation that you deserve.

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