We Are Backed by Decades of Experience
Your reputation and future are on the line if you have been accused of a theft crime in Colorado. Even a misdemeanor theft charge can penalize you with months behind bars and drain your finances with fines and administrative fees. Take control of the situation by coming to Springer & Steinberg, P.C. and working with our Denver theft crimes lawyers.
In some cases, theft crime charges can be defeated or minimized before they go to trial. We use our close connections with local courts and law enforcement agencies to find the right solution for your charges, such as a dismissal, plea bargain, or charge reduction. However, if the justice system is insistent on overstepping your rights, we can take things to the courtroom for litigation. As trial attorneys with decades of collective legal experience, we are not afraid to stand before a judge and jury on your behalf.
Misdemeanor and Felony Theft Charges
Colorado has five prominent classes for misdemeanor and felony theft crimes:
- Class 2 misdemeanor: Also called petty theft, this class is used when a property or service valued at $500 or less is allegedly stolen. Penalized with 3 to 12 months in jail and $250 to $1,000 in fines.
- Class 1 misdemeanor: Used when the value of the stolen property is $500 to $1,000 in value. Penalized with 6 to 18 months in jail and $500 to $5,000 in fines.
- Class 5 felony: Used when the alleged theft involved taken an item off a person but without force or threat of violence. Penalized with 1 to 3 years in prison and 2 or more years of mandatory parole.
- Class 4 felony: Used when the value of the stolen property is $1,000 to $20,000. Penalized with 2 to 6 years in prison and $2,000 to $50,000 in fines.
- Class 3 felony: Used when the value of the stolen property exceeds $20,000. Penalized with 4 to 12 years in prison, 5 years of parole, and $3,000 to $750,000 in fines.
Differences Between Robbery & Burglary
When considering theft crimes, people usually think of two: robbery and burglary. What many people do not realize is that robbery and burglary are two separate crimes, not a general term for theft that can be interchanged.
The differences between robbery and burglary charges in Colorado are:
- Robbery: The act of stealing an item from someone while they are present, such as taking a purse off someone’s shoulder. Robbery can be escalated to aggravated robbery or other charges if the act is committed through violence or intimidation.
- Burglary: The act of trespassing onto someone else’s property to commit another separate crime is burglary. People often associate burglary with theft because most people who trespass do so to steal something, like a wallet left unattended.
- Whether you are charged with robbery or burglary, the penalties upon conviction can be severe. In the majority of cases, either robbery or burglary is charged as a felony theft crime.
Is Borrowing Something without Asking a Theft Crime?
Have you been charged with a theft crime because you borrowed something without asking its owner for permission? You have landed in a legal gray area. In theory, it is not a crime to borrow something without permission since you must have the criminal intent to permanently take property from someone for it to be technically a crime. Arguing that you did not have that intent can become a he-said/she-said situation, though. You will need a reliable Denver theft attorney to successfully argue your point and defeat the charges.
On the other hand, if you borrow something with permission but forget to return it on time, it can still be considered a theft crime. In Colorado, the owner of the item can press charges if you fail to return it within 72 hours of agreed-upon return date. Typically, they must make some reasonable effort to contact you and retrieve their property before resorting to criminal charges.