Petit is used in legal parlance to describe crimes that are figuratively small or minor in nature. Petit theft crimes (also commonly referred to as petty theft) may not sound as severe as criminal charges for grand theft, but that does not mean the penalties for convictions relating to these offenses are minimal.
A conviction for any kind of a theft crime can have significant long-term consequences in addition to possible incarceration and fines. Theft convictions can create substantial hardships for individuals when seeking employment or applying for any kind of loans or lines of credit.Lawyer for Petit Theft Crimes in Miami-Dade County, Florida
If you have been arrested for any kind of alleged petty theft offense, you will want to seek legal representation as soon as possible. The Hoffman Firm aggressively defends clients accused of theft crimes throughout Miami-Dade County, including such communities as South Miami, Opa-locka, Miami Beach, Hialeah, and several others.
Evan A. Hoffman is a criminal defense attorney in Miami who has experience on both sides of the aisle as a former Assistant State Attorney. Let him provide a thorough evaluation of your case to help you understand your legal options by calling (305) 249-0090 right now to schedule a free initial consultation.
Overview of Petit Theft Arrests in North Miami
- How are petty theft crimes classified?
- When is petit theft considered a felony offense?
- Where can I find more information about petit theft crimes in Miami-Dade County?
Misdemeanor Petit Theft Charges in Florida
Petty theft crimes are typically classified based on the value of the property that was allegedly stolen. Under Florida Statute § 812.014, petit theft is generally any offense in which the value of the property allegedly stolen is less than $300.
Depending on the specific value of the property involved, an alleged offender could face either one of the following charges:
- Petit Theft of the Second Degree — When stolen property is valued at less than $100, the offense is a second-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 60 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $500.
- Petit Theft of the First Degree — When stolen property is valued at $100 or more but less than $300, the offense is a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000.
It is important to note that an alleged offender who commits petit theft and has a previous theft conviction can face first-degree misdemeanor charges, even if the property involved in the offense was valued at less than $100.
Felony Petit Theft Penalties in Miami-Dade County
If an alleged offender has been previously convicted two or more times for any theft offense, a petit theft offense becomes a third-degree felony. A conviction is punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000.
Furthermore, certain types of stolen items may be classified as grand theft of the third degree (also a third-degree felony), even if the actual value might fall within the parameters of an offense that would otherwise be a petit theft crime. Under Florida Statute § 812.014(2)(c), stolen property that automatically becomes third-degree grand theft includes:
- A will, codicil, or other testamentary instrument;
- A firearm;
- A motor vehicle (except for vehicles elsewhere in the statute that trigger more serious penalties);
- Any commercially farmed animal, including any animal of the equine, bovine, or swine class or other grazing animal;
- A bee colony of a registered beekeeper;
- An aquaculture species raised at a certified aquaculture facility (which also involves a $10,000 fine);
- Any fire extinguisher;
- Any amount of citrus fruit consisting of 2,000 or more individual pieces of fruit;
- Property taken from a designated construction site identified by the posting of a sign as provided for in Florida Statute § 810.09(2)(d);
- Any stop sign;
- Anhydrous ammonia; or
- Any amount of a controlled substance.
Florida Petit Theft Resources
File a Non-Emergency Police Report Online | Miami-Dade County — Use this website to file an online report for theft. Before you file a report, you should make sure that there are no known suspects, no weapons were involved, there are no injuries, the incident did not occur on Miami-Dade County School property or a state or federal numbered highway or freeway. Keep in mind that filing a false police report is a first-degree misdemeanor offense.
Florida Statute § 812.014 — View the full text of the state laws governing theft crimes in Florida. You can learn more about how judgments of guilty or not guilty are handled, including fingerprinting. In addition to fines and incarceration penalties, you can also find information about driver’s license suspensions.
Have you been arrested or do you think you might be under investigation for a petty theft offense in Florida? It will be in your best interest to immediately contact The Hoffman Firm for help achieving the most favorable possible outcome to your case.
Miami criminal defense attorney Evan A. Hoffman represents clients in Aventura, Coral Gables, Key Biscayne, North Miami, and many surrounding communities in Miami-Dade County. You can have him review your case during a free, confidential consultation as soon as you call (305) 249-0090 or fill out an online contact form today.