Theft/Shoplifting & Other Property Crimes
Theft as we know it in Indiana has changed over the years. For years when there was a theft, one would be charged with “Conversion”. Now however, there are just different levels of Theft, with each level having different punishments.
Theft in Indiana
Theft as a crime is defined in Indiana Code 35-43-4-2. To be guilty of theft, the state has to prove that a person knowingly or intentionally exerted unauthorized control over the property of another person, with the intent to deprive the other person of any part of its value or use.
In its simplest form, theft is a Class A Misdemeanor, with a maximum penalty of 365 days in jail, and a minimum penalty no jail time. Theft will be a Level 6 felony if: (i) the value of the property is at least seven hundred fifty dollars and less than fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), (ii) if the property being stolen is a firearm or a motor vehicle or a component part of a motor vehicle, or (iii) if the person has a prior unrelated conviction for theft or conversion. Theft can also be a level 5 felony if certain conditions are met.
If you are charged with Theft, its important you meet with an experienced criminal defense attorney to discuss what your options may be.
Burglary in Indiana
Another common property crime is Burglary. We all have an idea of what burglary is, but the statute actually requires certain showings. A person who breaks and enters the building or structure of another person, with intent to commit a felony or theft in it, commits burglary, a Level 5 felony.
However, burglary can be a Level 4 felony if the building or structure is a dwelling, and a Level 3 felony if it results in bodily injury to any person other than a defendant.
Burglary is a Level 2 felony if the burglary is committed while armed with a deadly weapon; or results in serious bodily injury to any person other than a defendant, and a Level 1 felony (the most serious) if: the building or structure is a dwelling; and it results in serious bodily injury to any person other than a defendant.
Just entering a home, without planning on committing a felony or theft inside isn’t burglary. That’s a separate offense known as Residential Entry.
Robbery in Indiana
A third common property crime is Robbery. There are different levels of robbery, and a theft can be instead charged with the more serious crime of Robbery under certain conditions.
A person who knowingly or intentionally takes property from another person or from the presence of another person: by using or threatening the use of force on any person; or by putting any person in fear commits robbery, a Level 5 felony. Force can be as small as a push. Robbery is a Level 3 felony if it is committed while armed with a deadly weapon or results in bodily injury to any person other than a defendant and a Level 2 felony if it results in serious bodily injury to any person other than a defendant.
Call Us so that We Can Defend You and Your Rights
Theft and Shoplifting offenses in Hamilton County are usually filed in Hamilton County Superior Court #4, Hamilton County Superior Court #5, or Hamilton County Superior Court #6. These are the courts that handle most of the Level 6 Felony and Misdemeanor charges. If you have been charged with burglary or robbery, it is likely you will be in Hamilton Superior Court #1, #2, or Circuit Court. Our office is located a block away from these courts.
Call Dollard Evans & Whalin at 317-770-7070 to discuss your case for free with one of our lawyers for your Theft or Shoplifting case. Let us provide you with the experienced and tenacious representation for your Theft or Shoplifting criminal defense that you deserve. Something as simple as a phone call can help you protect your legal rights, learn what options you might have, and lead you to the next crucial steps with your criminal defense.