What are the Possible Outcomes of a Larceny Arrest?

Posted on by New Mexico Criminal Law Offices

larceny and theftIt is illegal to steal in any state, and if you are arrested for stealing you could be charged with larceny. Larceny is a serious criminal offense that carries long-term consequences well beyond a prison sentence or even serving probation. A larceny conviction could prevent you from getting a job, joining the military, or also qualifying for forms of financial aid.

In New Mexico, larceny refers to theft crimes. Therefore, it is a rather broad category that includes everything from shoplifting to petty theft to any theft not done using force. Stealing with the use of force or intimidation is an entirely different charge known as “robbery,” while breaking and entering to steal is known as “burglary.”

What is important here is that anything can be stolen and qualify for a larceny charge, including food, money, a person’s checkbook, accommodations, or even services.

What is a Larcenous Act in Albuquerque?

Specific acts constitute a larceny conviction in New Mexico, including:

  • Receiving, retaining, or disposing of stolen property purposely, or believing it was stolen before committing one of these acts – unless you intend to return to the property to its owner.
  • Obtaining services, food, accommodations, and other items with the intention of never paying for them.
  • Committing identity theft.
  • Using another person’s credit card without knowledge or consent from the owner.
  • Renting or leasing vehicles as someone else or using another person’s license to secure a rental.
  • Shoplifting products from a store, including altering price tags for a cheaper price, swapping packaging to steal an expensive item in an inexpensive box, or leaving the store while concealing products.

Exploring the Potential Outcomes of Larceny Charges

The outcomes of a larceny case will depend on the strength of evidence the prosecution has against you, but also the type of larceny crime you allegedly committed. Some potential outcomes include:

Larceny Penalties and Sentencing

The state of New Mexico has strict guidelines for prison and jail sentences you would encounter for being convicted of larceny. The criminal statute would dictate the suggested range of years you would serve in prison.

Some examples of sentences you could encounter include:

  • Misdemeanor Petty Theft – The products you stole were under $250 in value, but you could still serve up to six months in jail.
  • Misdemeanor Theft – The value of the property ranged from $250.01 to $500, and you could serve up to one year in jail.
  • 4th Degree Felony Theft – The value of the property is $500.01 to $2,500, and now you could face up to 18 months in prison.
  • 3rd Degree Felony Theft – The value of the property is $2,500.01 to $20,000, and you may face up to three years in prison.
  • 2nd Degree Felon Theft – You have stolen something valued at over $20,000, which means you could serve if nine years in prison.

Restitution and Other Financial Penalties

If you are convicted of a larceny crime, you are likely to be required to pay restitution. Restitution is the financial compensation the courts require you to repay to the victim, such as the retailer.

The amount you pay in restitution is based on the value of the property and the statute. Some possible restitution fines you could pay include, but are not limited to:

  • Cost of the Stolen Property – The face value of the property you stole will be reimbursed to the victim out of your assets or bank account. If you can return the merchandise unharmed to the owner, then you may escape this type of restitution.
  • Lawsuit Value – If the victim sues you in civil court, you may be required to pay the costs to bring that lawsuit against you, such as attorney’s fees.
  • Punitive Damages – Theft does not just take something that is not yours; it also deprives someone of something that is valuable or useful to them. Therefore, you may be forced to pay punitive damages. Punitive damages are civil damages that are explicitly designed to punish, and these could range from $100 to $250.

Probation and Parole

Whether you spend time in jail or you are given probation in lieu of serving jail time, you will likely encounter probation. Probation is not a picnic, nor should you assume that you can do what you would like while on probation. With probation comes strict conditions set by the judge, and if you fail to follow any of them, you may be arrested and forced to serve the rest of your sentence (with additional penalties) in jail or prison.

Probation is not free either. You may be required to pay the probation costs, costs of any monitoring devices, and the cost of any frequent drug or alcohol screening (if necessary). You may also have conditions that require you to maintain employment, stay within specific cities, and check in with a probation officer on particular dates.

The Best Possible Outcome Requires a Criminal Defense Attorney

The only way to ensure you are receiving the best possible outcome in your case is to hire a criminal defense attorney. An attorney can help reduce sentences and may be able to poke enough holes in the prosecution’s case to have the charges dismissed entirely.

If you have been arrested for larceny or a theft-related crime, do not attempt to negotiate with the prosecution on your own. Instead, speak with a criminal defense attorney.

The attorneys from New Mexico Criminal Law Offices are here to help you with your case. We understand how stressful and confusing this time can be, and we are here to ensure you get the best possible outcome.

Schedule a free, no-obligation case evaluation with our team now at 505-375-4672 or request more information online.