Theft Crimes

Los Angeles Theft Crime Attorney


***With so many recent changes in theft laws in Los Angeles County you are definitely best served by hiring a seasoned local criminal defense attorney to assist you in protecting your record, reputation and freedom. In 25 years of practicing criminal defense, this is the most lenient I have seen the L.A. court system when it comes to resolving theft related offenses. However, there are of course certain circumstances that will cause prosecutors and judges to be more harsh and less likely to give you a result you can live with. Further, there are situations that fall right on the borderline and need the push of a savvy defense attorney to achieve success. The bottom line is that you must get into to see a top criminal attorney and begin the process of protecting your good name. When I meet with clients, I have a goal of making sure that they leave my office with a solid game plan in place moving forward, an idea of exactly what they can expect in their case and detailed instructions on how they can help me yield the best possible outcome for their case!


Your first move should be to seek the advice of an attorney that has handled theft cases in the courthouse where your matter is pending.  You need to educate yourself on how the system works and what you can do to protect your record and freedom.  Theft related offenses in Los Angeles can have a long lasting effect on a person’s life.  Your best chance of minimizing the damages you can suffer is to hire an attorney that has been down the road you are about to travel and had success!  So get your list of questions together and go sit down face to face with someone that you feel confident has the credentials you need to get you the best results.

Theft is the crime of taking another persons property without consent or authorization. There are many types of theft, including: robberyburglary, identity theft, credit card theft, embezzlement, shoplifting, receiving stolen property, larceny, and carjacking. Theft crimes are typically categorized as grand theft or petty theft. Of the two categories, grand theft is considered more severe, and involves harsher legal consequences. Punishments for theft convictions may involve jail time, restitution (repayment of stolen property’s value), fines, probation, and court ordered treatment.

Petty theft is stealing property that is valued at $400 or less. In most cases, petty theft is considered a misdemeanor offense. If a person is convicted of petty theft, he/she may have to pay a fine and spend less than six months in jail. However, if the person has prior theft convictions, or a criminal history, his/her sentence can be enhanced.

Grand theft is stealing property that is valued at $400 or greater, or the theft of a motor vehicle. In California, grand theft is considered a felony offense. If a person is convicted of grand theft, he/she may be punished with a year or more jail time and have to pay a fine. If the theft involved the use of a weapon or firearm, the person may have to spend up to 3 years in prison. Additionally, a persons sentence can be enhanced if he/she has prior theft convictions, or a criminal history.

Experienced Criminal Defense Attorneys 
At the Hedding Law Firm, we have successfully handled a variety of theft crime cases, ranging from misdemeanors to felonies. Our attorneys understand the adverse consequences people face when they are convicted of a theft crime. That is why we do everything we can to fight for our clients.

If you have been charged with a theft crime, call us today! Our skilled legal team will investigate the facts surrounding your case, contest evidence presented against you, and place every effort into your defense. At the Hedding Law Firm, we are dedicated to our clients and their cases.


A party can be found for Theft if the government can prove…
1. The party took possession of property owned by someone else;
2. The party took the property without the owners (or owner’s agent’s) consent;
3. When the party took the property, they intended to deprive the owner of it permanently or for such an extended period of time that the owner would be deprived of a major proportion of the value or enjoyment of the property;


4. The defendant moved the property, even a small distance, and kept it for any period of time, no matter how brief.

GRAND THEFT PENAL CODE 486, 487-488, 491

Once a party has been convicted of Theft, the jury must then decide if the theft qualifies as either Grand or Petty Theft. A jury can find Grand Theft when…

1. The party stole property for more than $400.00; or
2. If the theft of the property came from the person of the victim; or
3. Theft was of an automobile, firearm, a horse, or any other statutorily declared property; or
4. Theft was of fruit, nuts or any other statutorily declared property in excess of $100.00; or
5. Theft was of fish and shellfish from a commercial/research facility in excess of $100.00.

All other theft is considered petty theft.