LARCENY CHARGES AND DES MOINES CRIMINAL DEFENSE

Theft, shoplifting, stealing. These are all property crimes that may be described as larceny or grand larceny under criminal law. If you have been charged with larceny in Des Moines or surrounding areas, you could be facing severe penalties in the criminal justice system.

Whether the accusations are the result of something you did or you have been falsely accused, my law firm can make sure your rights are protected to the fullest extent possible. Contact my Des Moines law office - Vogel Law, PLLC - online or by telephone at 515-243-1978 to discuss your options in theft and larceny defense.

What Classifies As Larceny?

In Iowa, property crimes involving theft are classified according to the value of the property taken and whether or not violence or intimidation played a role in the theft. Larceny generally refers to nonviolent theft. While most people think of retail theft when discussing such property crimes, larceny can refer to any instance of unlawfully taking another individual's property without the owner's consent and with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of that property.

Do not confuse larceny with other related charges like embezzlement, stealing of labor or services, or stealing utilities (cable, water, electricity). These charges are similar, but distinct under criminal law.

Misdemeanor Versus Felony Charges

You may be charged with theft in the first degree (a class C felony) if the amount of property taken exceeded $10,000 in value or the crime involved taking property directly from another's person. This felony charge can result in fines between $500 and $10,000 and up to 10 years in prison. If you face a misdemeanor theft charge, you may be fined up to $100 and/or sentenced to community service.

While felony charges clearly carry greater consequences in the criminal justice system, any mark on your criminal record can change your life. You need an experienced and aggressive attorney to help keep your record clear, suppress evidence against you, pursue reduced sentences or reduced charges, and otherwise protect your future.

Do not waste any time. Contact my office as soon as you have been questioned, investigated, arrested or charged with a crime.