Petit Theft or Larceny Charges in Florida
Petit theft or larceny in Florida occurs when a person: (1) knowingly obtaining or using, or endeavoring to obtain or use; (2) the property of another; (3) with intent to either temporarily or permanently deprive the other person of a right to the property or a benefit from the property; (4) with the value of the property being $300.00 or less. F.S.A. § 812.014(1) (a), (3) (a). See also J.B. v. State, No. 4D12-1156, 2014 WL 837006 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Mar. 5, 2014).
Basically, Petit theft or larceny occurs when someone takes the property of another without the permission of that person with the value being $300.00 or less. In Florida, petit theft occurs mostly in the form of shop lifting from box stores. Box stores are those locations like Wal-Mart, Target, Publix Shopping Center, CVS and Walgreens Pharmacies, and many of the large stores within the malls and outlets that dot the Florida landscape.
Believe it or not, theft cases are committed by a wide range of individuals. It does not matter what race, gender or social economic status one has, thefts’ are committed by all types of people. Most box stores have security personnel that watch shoppers and look out specifically for those who are committing petit theft.
Security personnel also watch the employees of the box stores. Through an elaborate camera system in most box stores, security personal are on the lookout for cashiers who are pocketing money from the cash register draw. Looking out for fraudulent returns of merchandise by the cashier, their family or friends. The security personnel also look out for those employees who may actually take products, household goods, and other pieces of merchandise from the store or loading docks that receive and deliver goods to the consumer.
Security personnel are highly trained on how to deal with would be thieves. First, they gain enough evidence to show the individual has committed the crime of theft. Second, they ask the individual to come into the office and explain that if the accused tells them the truth, it will become a civil matter, wherein the accused can pay back the losses and not face criminal charges. Third, the security personnel request that the accused write a statement or give an oral statement as to how the theft or thefts occurred. Lastly, security personnel will then call law enforcement officers and have the accused arrested.
Sometime the accused is taking into custody and booked for the crime of petit theft. Other times, the accused is given a Notice to Appear or NTA at a later court date. Either way, the accused must answer for the petit theft or face a warrant for failure to appear.
In many jurisdictions throughout South Florida, including Palm Beach County, if the accused has an open arrest for petit theft but has no other criminal charges in their lifetime, he or she will likely be eligible for a diversion or Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI) program. These two programs are set up to educate the individual about the societal harms associated with stealing from others. The two programs provide a lifeline to those who have made a mistake but wish to make amends for their transgression. The two programs have a very high success rate and wonderful tools for those accused of petit theft to keep their criminal records clean.
If you or a loved one has been arrested for petit theft or larceny in Palm Beach County, FL you need to telephone West Palm Beach Criminal Defense Lawyer, Andrew D. Stine at 561.880.4300 Andrew D. Stine, has represented hundreds of individuals charged with the crime of petit theft or larceny over the past decade. West Palm Beach Criminal Defense Attorney, Andrew D. Stine, has built a road map to success plan that those accused of petit theft or larceny follow will almost always result in their criminal charges being thrown out, dismissed or nolle prossed. Do as thousands before you have done and Hire Stine or Do the Time!