Criminal allegations of any kind can have a significant effect on your college career and other areas of your life. Even if you believe that what you are up against is not a significant threat, it is in your interests to take your situation seriously. This includes charges of theft, a type of property crime. If convicted, it could result in consequences that may change your future.
Theft involves the act of taking property without the property owner’s permission. In order to convict someone of this type of crime, there must be evidence of the person’s intent. This is the most complex aspect of a theft case as it is difficult to prove why someone acted in a specific way. No matter the nature of the prosecution’s evidence, it is in your interests to defend yourself and your future.
Types of theft
There are different types of theft, and the penalties you are facing depend largely on the specific category of theft you allegedly committed. The two main types include:
- Petty theft – This involves taking property that is worth less than a certain amount. In most cases, this involves items that have a relatively low monetary value, such as things worth $1,000 or less, and is usually a misdemeanor offense.
- Grand theft – This involves the theft of property that is worth more than the limit set for petty theft. Grand theft is a felony offense, and the penalties associated with this offense are significant.
If convicted of theft as a Florida college student, you are up against more than just fines and a mark on your criminal record. Depending on the nature of the alleged offense, you could face time behind bars. You may also lose your scholarships, future educational opportunities and more.
An appropriate defense
A strong defense is important for your future when facing theft charges. You would be wise to start working on the ideal defense strategy for your situation as soon as possible after an arrest. You may be a college student, but the penalties associated with any type of criminal conviction can derail your future. In order to mitigate these penalties, fight the case against you and potentially avoid a conviction, you may want to take the time to learn about the specific defense options available to you.