Larceny Over/Under $1,200

A good larceny defense lawyer will contest the value of the goods allegedly stolen. Often times the prosecution will try to find a way to stretch the value of the goods stolen in an attempt to increase a larceny under $250 charge into a larceny over $250 charge. A larceny over $250 charge can be reduced to a larceny under $250 charge if your lawyer can show the police miscalculated the value of the goods, or owner of the stolen goods misstated or lied about the actual value of the goods. However, in order to protect your rights you need an attorney that knows to lookout for these issues.

About Shoplifting Charges for Merchandise Over or Under $250 Dollars

Generally speaking, there are two forms of shoplifting:

  • Shoplifting merchandise with a value under $100; and
  • Shoplifting merchandise with a value over $100.

The penalties for shoplifting depend on the value of the merchandise stolen:

  • If the total value of the merchandise is less than $100, a first-time offender is subject to a $250 fine, a second-time offender a $500 fine and a third-time offender faces a fine and or imprisonment in a jail for not more than two years.
  • If the value of the goods stolen is more than $100, the penalties are more serious: up to 30 months in jail and a $1,000 fine, even for a first-time offender.

Concealing Merchandise

The shoplifting by concealing statute means that you don’t need to take the merchandise out of the store in order to be found guilty of a shoplifting crime. All the prosecutor has to show is that the defendant removed the merchandise from the display or shelf and concealed it. This is form of shoplifting can be difficult to charge especially in the case in self-service stores where people remove merchandise from displays or shelves and walk with them while they continue shopping. To get this charge to stick the prosecutor will have to show that there was some form of concealment that indicated the defendant did not intend to pay for the merchandise. Putting merchandise in a shoe or sock or placing it in the inside pocket of a coat usually indicates an intention to take the merchandise without paying for it.

Larceny by False Pretense

Pawn shop owners are frequent victims of larceny by false pretense. The charge of larceny by false pretense is usually brought when someone successfully pawns property that they don’t own because it is either stolen or borrowed. Usually all the elements listed above are satisfied when someone brings a watch they know is stolen to a pawnshop and presents it as their own. In this situation they are representing that the watch is theirs and the pawn shop, believing them, hands over money in return. It should be noted that it doesn’t matter whether the victim/pawn shop could have uncovered the thief’s lie if he investigated because the pawnbroker in this case has a right to rely on the thief’s statements and representations, unless it is obvious the thief is lying.

Breaking and Entering in the Daytime with the Intent to Commit a Felony

In the state of Massachusetts, breaking and entering is defined as entering any type of location (a home, an office building, or even a car) without permission and with the intent of committing a crime. Breaking and Entering in the Daytime with the Intent to Commit a Felony is a crime governed by Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 266 § 18. Anyone found guilty of breaking and entering in the daytime with the intent to commit a Felony faces or fine up to $500 or imprisonment in a state prison for a maximum of 10 years, or imprisonment in the house of corrections for a maximum of 2 ½ years.

Armed Robbery While Masked

Armed robbery while masked is an extremely serious crime, a conviction for which carries a mandatory minimum sentence in state prison for 15 years. Broadly speaking, in the state of Massachusetts, a person can be charged with armed robbery if he was armed with a dangerous weapon while assaulting another person and robbing another person (on the street, in a store, at home, etc.) It is not necessary to have used, or even displayed, the weapon in question, but there does have to be an implicit threat of force.

Shoplifting by Switching Price Tag

Anyone who knowingly and intentionally carries away merchandise on sale from a store/merchant with intention of taking possession of that merchandise without paying for the merchandise will be found guilty if shoplifting by switching price tag.

In order to prove the defendant guilty of shoplifting by switching price tag, the prosecution must prove three things beyond a reasonable doubt …

Shoplifting by Asportation

Shoplifting is a misdemeanor crime. As a practical matter, Police in Massachusetts have limited powers to arrest someone for a misdemeanor crime that wasn’t committed in their presence. Generally speaking, a police officer can only arrest someone for shoplifting if he has probable cause to believe the person has committed the offense of shoplifting. If an employee or business owner shows the police officer video footage from surveillance cameras that shows someone shoplifting then the officer has probable cause to arrest that individual. However, police officers and surveillance cameras can not witness every crime. In these situations the police wont arrest the individual but instead will apply for a complaint at the local district. The person accused in the complaint of shoplifting will receive a notice to appear for a clerk magistrates hearing or show cause hearing. To read more about our clerks hearing defense visit our page on clerk hearings.

Possession of Burglarious Tools

Burglarious tools can be any item that is used for legal purposes like gloves, dinner knives, screwdrivers, and crowbars. Basically, anything that can be used to break into a house, room or vault and that is possessed for that specific purpose meets the definition. The defendant doesn’t need to use the tools in an attempted break-in in order to be guilty. Simply possessing these tools in the truck of a car may be sufficient.

Felony Armed Robbery Charges

Broadly speaking, in the state of Massachusetts, a person can be charged with armed robbery if he was armed with a dangerous weapon while assaulting and robbing another person (on the street, in a store, at home, etc.) It’s not necessary to have used, or even displayed, the weapon in question, but there does have to be an implicit threat of force. Note, too, that the definition of “dangerous weapon” can be very liberal: this doesn’t necessarily apply only to knives and guns, but also to a baseball bat or brass knuckles.

Aggravated Burglary Defense Lawyers

In order to be charged with any crime of burglary, you do not have to physically break into a building or home; even entering through an unlocked door is enough to subject yourself to prosecution. It’s also not necessary to actually succeed in stealing anything; once again, your mere unauthorized presence (especially at night) is all the district attorney needs to press charges.

Armed and Unarmed Burglary Charges Defense Lawyers, Brockton, Taunton, Quincy

In order to be charged with burglary, it’s not necessary to physically break into a house or building; even entering through a carelessly unlocked door is enough to subject yourself to prosecution. It’s also not necessary to actually succeed in stealing anything; once again, your mere unauthorized presence (especially at night) is all the district attorney needs to press charges.

Petit Larceny vs Grand Larceny

In Massachusetts law, grand larceny is one of the two types of larceny by stealing in which the value of the goods, money or property stolen exceeds $250. As its adjective implies, “grand” larceny is a serious felony, punishable by up to five years in state prison and a $25,000 fine. (By contrast, petty larceny, which involves thefts of less than $250, counts as a misdemeanor rather than a felony.)

Larceny by Stealing Criminal Defense Attorneys

Larceny is a legal term for “stealing” and is one of the most common crimes committed in Massachusetts, as well as in every other state. Crimes of larceny by stealing involve the theft or taking of property. In most cases involving property theft, the accused will be charged with some form of larceny. Under the law, the term “property” is very broad and applies to chattel (movable items and personal property such as furniture, paintings, household items — possessions of value), as well as to pets, and even computer data. “Property” also includes money, checks, bonds, and promissory notes.

Larceny of a Motor Vehicle

In Massachusetts law, “larceny of a stolen vehicle” refers to much more than the simple act of stealing a car. The charge of larceny of a stolen vehicle can be leveled against an individual caught hot-wiring a car, but also against anyone who buys, receives, conceals or is simply found in possession of a car that he/she should “reasonably” have known had been stolen. This last legal clause can be difficult to prove, so district attorneys pay special attention when the car’s identifying numbers, including the license plate or interior serial numbers have been altered or intentionally removed.

Larceny by Check, MA Criminal Defense Lawyer

“Larceny by check” refers to the act of deliberately writing a bad check—that is, one that you know will not be covered by sufficient funds in your bank account to pay on the check in an attempt to defraud an individual, bank, or business.

Many people accidentally bounce a check now and then, so in order to prove a charge of larceny by check the district attorney has to establish that you were aware of the lack of funds when you wrote the check, and that you deliberately set out to commit fraud. One way the state attempts to prove you intended to commit fraud is if you ignore the “insufficient funds” notice from your bank, which you banks always send out within a few days after overdrawing your checking account….

Shoplifting Defense

In Massachusetts, “shoplifting” can mean more than simply walking into a store and walking out with an unpaid piece of merchandise. Although simple theft is the most common form of shoplifting, this charge also applies if you’ve been caught tampering with price tags (for example if you switch the tags with an expensive and inexpensive shirt), attempting to conceal one piece of merchandise inside another piece of merchandise, or even taking a shopping cart off the store’s property…

Larceny by Stealing in a Building, MA Criminal Defense Lawyers

In the state of Massachusetts, the crime of “larceny by stealing in a building” differs fundamentally from armed or unarmed burglary:

  • Charges of armed or unarmed burglary apply mostly to private homes and apartments, as well as office buildings, boats, cars, etc.
  • A charge of larceny by stealing in a building can be leveled only when you’ve been accused of stealing property from a non-residential building or vessel, including ships, motor vehicles and even railroad cars.

A retail store may not technically count as a building; larceny from an open store will usually be charged as a different crime, shoplifting…

Larceny by Stealing from a Person, MA Theft Crimes Defense Attorneys

In a certain sense, the crime of “larceny by stealing from a person” exists in part to give defendants something to plead down to when they’ve been accused of robbery or armed robbery. Robbery and armed robbery are crimes punishable by extremely severe penalties (up to, and including life in prison), whereas, larceny by stealing from a person carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison…