What Are the Penalties for a Felony Theft Conviction in Texas?

man in handcuffs holding money

Like most people, you work hard for your money and the things you purchase. As such, theft can be considered an egregious crime. In many instances, the penalties you will face depend on the circumstances surrounding your crime and the value of the item stolen. Regardless, it’s in your best interest to connect with a Houston theft defense attorney to explore your legal options if you are facing a felony theft conviction. The following blog explores these charges in further detail, so you’ll want to keep reading to discover what you must know.

What Warrants Felony Theft?

It’s important to understand that, in Texas, theft and larceny are often used interchangeably. Larceny refers specifically to the act of taking someone’s property away from them without their consent, while theft refers to a wide array of crimes, including larceny, fraud, embezzlement, and shoplifting.

Generally, any time you intentionally deprive someone of their property, it is considered theft.

What Penalties Can I Face for This Crime?

In Texas, the penalties you will face for a theft crime depend heavily on the value of the item taken and the circumstances surrounding the crime. For example, stealing firearms, taking property from a gravesite, stealing controlled substances from a pharmaceutical building, or robbing an ATM can all impact what charges you face.

In general, it is considered a felony offense if you take any item valued at over $2,500. Any item between $2,500 and $30,000 is a state jail felony, with prison time lasting 180 days to two years. Felony theft is charged to those who take items valued between $30,000 and $150,000. This warrants between two and ten years in prison. You will face a second-degree felony and two to twenty years behind bars if the item is worth $150,000 to $300,000. If the item is valued at over $300,000, you can face up to life in prison on a first-degree felony charge.

Not only will you face criminal charges for these crimes, but you can also face civil penalties. As such, the victim is entitled to statutory damages.

If I’m Placed Under Arrest, What Can I Do?

If arrested on felony theft charges, understanding what you can do to protect yourself is critical. Generally, the most important thing you can do is comply with the officer’s orders. Failing to follow their instructions can lead to additional resisting arrest charges. This makes proving your innocence harder. However, you must only physically comply. You do not, and should not, say anything to the officers. Many try to please their innocence to the arresting officers without realizing they are saying something incriminating. As such, it’s in your best interest to invoke your right to remain silent until you have spoken to legal representation.

When you’re in trouble, the Gonzalez Law Group can help. We understand that facing felony theft charges can be overwhelming, which is why we are dedicated to examining all aspects of your circumstances to determine the best course of action. Connect with a member of our experienced team today to discuss your situation and learn how we can assist you through these matters.