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Is Larceny a Felony in New Mexico?


Experienced Defense Lawyers Fighting Theft and Larceny Charges throughout New Mexico

theft signpostThe term “larceny” in the New Mexico criminal statutes refers to a variety of theft crimes. Larceny is an illegal act where one steals anything of value that belongs to another person.

Per New Mexico Statute Section 30-16-1(A), the crime of larceny involves taking any property, money, intangible products, or services that carry value. Therefore, this is a broad spectrum of consumer items.

Not all larceny crimes are felonies. However, it is important to know the classifications and what could constitute larceny before assuming you would be facing misdemeanor charges only.

The Classifications of Theft and Larceny Offenses in New Mexico

The state, like most other states, classifies larceny into multiple offense categories. These classes are based on the value of the total stolen goods. Firearms and livestock, however, have different specifications depending on the products involved.

Misdemeanor Petty Larceny

If the value of the goods, services, or items stolen equals $250 or less, then this form of larceny is charged as a petty misdemeanor. Under the statute, you might face up to six months in jail or a fine or no more than $500. If the judge feels it is necessary, he or she may impose both penalties.

Misdemeanor Larceny or Theft

When the value of the property exceeds $250, but not more than $500, this type of theft is charged as a misdemeanor. Misdemeanors are still serious offenses, and you could face one year or less in a county jail facility or a fine of up to $1,000. In some cases, both.

Fourth Degree Felony Larceny

Now comes the time where larceny transforms from a misdemeanor offense into a felony offense. A felony is a serious charge. While you might have a small prison sentence or no sentence, do not assume there are not consequences for a felony conviction. Felonies stay on your criminal record for the rest of your life, limit opportunities for job employment, and more.

When the value of the stolen property is over $500 and still under the $2,500 value threshold, you face a fourth-degree felony. If a firearm is involved, then the firearms market value must also be under $2,500. In this case, you could experience 18 months in prison (not jail) and up to $5,000 in fines.

Third Degree Felony Larceny

The charges are enhanced to a third-degree charge if the value of the property is under $20,000, but exceeds the $2,500 threshold. Also, any livestock, regardless of value, falls into the third-degree felony crime. If convicted, you face up to three years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.

Second Degree Felony Larceny

While rare, second-degree felony larceny can occur, especially if stealing a motor vehicle – often called “grand theft.” If the value of the goods equates to more than $20,000, you could be convicted and punished with up to nine years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

Larceny is a Serious Offense – You Need Serious Representation

Do not assume all larceny charges are minor. A larceny offense, even as a misdemeanor, will affect you the rest of your life. Certain jobs, like retail, do not allow individuals with theft convictions or charges on their records to work in their stores.

When you face any criminal larceny charge, speak with a defense attorney from New Mexico Criminal Law Offices today. Schedule your free case evaluation now at 505-375-4763 or request more information online.