Theft Lawyer Atlanta: Your Advocate in Property Crime Cases

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Facing theft charges in Atlanta? Learn how Farnsworth & Murphy, your dedicated theft lawyers, can defend your rights and provide the legal guidance you need.

Farnsworth & MurphyFarnsworth & Murphy LLC
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Experienced Legal Defense for Theft Charges in Atlanta

In Georgia, theft is defined as unlawfully taking someone else’s property with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of it. Facing theft charges can be an overwhelming experience, often casting a long shadow over your future with potential repercussions that include severe financial penalties, loss of employment opportunities, and even imprisonment. 

However, being charged does not guarantee a conviction—there are defenses available and strategies that can lead to a more favorable outcome. At Farnsworth & Murphy, LLC, we are dedicated to navigating these complex situations, ensuring that every legal avenue is explored to protect your rights and restore your peace of mind.

Our law firm is deeply committed to aiding our clients. If you are facing theft charges in Atlanta, securing an experienced legal team is essential. Contact us today to tell us about your case, and let our track record of success reflect our ability to champion your defense effectively.

What Are Theft Charges in Atlanta?

Theft charges in Atlanta cover many offenses, each with distinct actions and legal consequences. Here’s an overview of the various forms of theft:

Shoplifting

This type of theft involves taking merchandise from a retail store without paying. It is classified as a misdemeanor if the value of the stolen items is less than $1,500. If the value exceeds $1,500, it escalates to felony status.

Theft by Deception/Conversion

Theft by Deception occurs when an individual acquires property through intentional misrepresentation or deceit. Theft by Conversion involves unlawfully retaining or using property that was initially obtained lawfully. The severity of these charges can vary significantly based on the value of the property and the circumstances.

Embezzlement and Burglary

Embezzlement involves a breach of trust where someone illegally takes property they are entrusted with, often in employment or fiduciary settings. Burglary is charged when someone unlawfully enters a building intending to commit a felony, theft, or assault, not just theft. Understanding the elements required for burglary and defenses is imperative for building a case.

Robbery and Hijacking a Motor Vehicle

Robbery involves the use or threat of force to steal from someone. Hijacking a motor vehicle, often referred to as carjacking, involves the violent theft of a vehicle using force or intimidation.

Understanding the nuances of these theft types is critical for anyone facing theft charges in Atlanta. The specific nature of the theft can significantly influence the legal defense strategy and the severity of potential penalties.

Penalties for Theft Convictions in Atlanta

The consequences of a theft conviction in Atlanta can be severe and long-lasting. Georgia law categorizes theft offenses primarily based on the value of the stolen property:

Misdemeanor Theft

This applies when the stolen property is valued at less than $1,500. Penalties can include up to one year in jail, fines up to $1,000, or both.

Felony Theft

For property valued over $1,500.01, the charge escalates to a felony, potentially resulting in a prison sentence ranging from one to ten years, with longer sentences possible for significantly higher theft amounts.

In some cases, the nature of the theft itself can lead to more severe charges, such as theft involving a breach of trust or theft of property from a government or bank by an employee, which is automatically classified as a felony regardless of the property’s value.

The impact of a theft conviction extends beyond the courtroom. It can drastically affect your future employment opportunities, housing options, and reputation. A criminal record can hinder professional licensing and have significant personal and social ramifications.

 

The Legal Process for Theft Charges

Having a seasoned defense attorney is essential when facing theft charges in Atlanta. Here’s what an attorney would typically handle at each step of the criminal justice process:

  • Arrest & Booking: If arrested by the Atlanta Police for theft, the accused undergoes the booking process, including fingerprinting and a formal charge.
  • First Appearance & Bail: The accused appears before a judge shortly after the arrest. A defense attorney may advocate for reasonable bail or argue for release on their own recognizance.
  • Discovery & Plea Bargaining: A defense attorney reviews the prosecutor’s evidence and may engage in plea negotiations to potentially reduce charges or penalties.
  • Pre-Trial Motions: Strategic pre-trial motions are often employed to suppress evidence if the accused’s rights were violated during the arrest.
  • Trial: At trial, the defense attorney presents a robust defense, challenges the prosecution’s case, and strives to create reasonable doubt among jurors.
  • Sentencing: If convicted, the attorney works to achieve the most lenient sentence possible, emphasizing mitigating factors and the accused’s positive attributes.

A defense attorney’s goal throughout the process is to maintain clear and honest communication, ensuring clients trust their professional experience and capabilities. They navigate the intricacies of the legal system with integrity and dedication to defending the client’s rights and securing the best possible outcome.

The Risks of Facing Theft Charges Without Legal Representation

Not having an attorney present when facing theft charges can significantly impact the outcome of your case and your overall experience with the legal system. Here are some potential consequences of navigating the criminal justice process without legal representation:

Misunderstanding Your Rights

Without an attorney, you might not fully know your rights or how to effectively exercise them. This could lead to inadvertently waiving critical rights, such as the right to remain silent or the right to avoid self-incrimination.

Difficulty Navigating the Legal System

The legal system can be complex and confusing, especially for those without formal legal training. Without an attorney, you may struggle to understand the charges against you, the court procedures, or how to file the necessary legal documents.

Less Favorable Plea Deals

Attorneys often negotiate plea deals on behalf of their clients. Without one, you may be disadvantaged during plea negotiations, potentially resulting in a less favorable deal that could have harsher penalties or fail to consider mitigating factors.

Increased Risk at Trial

If your case goes to trial, an attorney is crucial for formulating and presenting a strong defense. Without legal expertise, challenging the prosecution’s evidence, cross-examining witnesses, or presenting a compelling case to the jury may be challenging.

Harsher Sentences

Attorneys not only defend you in court but also advocate for leniency or alternative sentencing options. Without one, there is a higher chance of receiving a maximum sentence or not being able to effectively argue for reduced penalties based on mitigating circumstances.

Long-Term Consequences

A criminal conviction can have far-reaching effects on your life, affecting employment opportunities, housing, and personal relationships. An attorney can help mitigate these long-term consequences, sometimes by securing a lesser charge or exploring opportunities for expungement.

Overall, not having an attorney when dealing with theft or criminal charges can lead to severe immediate and long-term consequences. Legal representation is a critical component in ensuring that your rights are protected and that you have a fair chance in the legal process.

Farnsworth & Murphy: Your Theft Defense Team

Facing theft charges can be one of the most challenging experiences in a person’s life, affecting not only their immediate freedom but also their future. The guidance of a skilled defense attorney can be invaluable in navigating this difficult time. 

At Farnsworth & Murphy LLC, we understand how stressful it is to face theft charges, ranging from shoplifting to grand theft. We serve clients across Fulton, Dekalb, Cobb, and Gwinnett counties, offering deep knowledge of local and state laws. Our defense strategy focuses on providing personal attention and strong advocacy for every client.

Our team is skilled in handling various theft-related charges, and we are familiar with the judges and court systems in Atlanta. By choosing us, you’re not just hiring an attorney; you’re gaining a committed team dedicated to protecting your rights and future.

Choosing the right attorney is critical when you’re accused of a theft crime. We invite you to learn more about how our dedicated team can help. Contact Farnsworth & Murphy for a tailored defense strategy that meets your needs.

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Free Initial Consultation

Call Farnsworth & Murphy LLC at 470-601-7056 or fill out our easy-to-use online form to get in touch and schedule a free initial consultation.

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