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DAVID CLARK
Criminal Defense Attorney

Alternative Sentencing for Philadelphia Auto Theft Offenses

Auto theft offenses can carry serious repercussions. It is not uncommon for individuals involved in auto theft to be sent to jail or to have to pay fines. If you have been accused or convicted of taking a car that does not belong to you, contact a lawyer immediately. An experienced auto theft attorney could help you fight for alternative sentencing for Philadelphia auto theft offenses.

Elements of Auto Theft

Auto theft encompasses two offenses. The first offense is theft, which is the unlawful act of taking an item from another individual with the intent to permanently deprive them of it. The second offense is theft that involves a motor vehicle. It is not uncommon for individuals to misconstrue auto theft and larceny.

The Difference Between Auto Theft and Larceny

Auto theft is when an individual steals a car, and larceny is when an individual steals personal property or money. Due to the fact that larceny includes the theft of personal property, people often believe that this can include cars, however, larceny does not apply to motor vehicles.

Auto Theft Penalties

Auto theft is graded as a felony in the third degree. Individuals who are involved in auto theft can face between three to seven years in jail and have to pay a fine of up to $15,000 per incident. However, if an individual uses threats or force when they steal a car, they will be charged with a felony in the first degree. In extreme cases, such an action can be charged as carjacking.

As can be seen, auto theft can have serious consequences depending on the circumstances surrounding an incident. Individuals who have been accused of taking a car should talk to a lawyer to learn about alternative sentencing for Philadelphia auto theft offenses.

Probation and Diversionary Programs

Probation and diversionary programs can be made available to individuals under the right circumstances. If a lawyer is able to demonstrate that a defendant has drug or alcohol problems, or was under the influence when committing an offense, they could argue that the defendant was not in their right mind. If a lawyer succeeds at proving this, a defendant’s charge could be reduced to a misdemeanor.

Once a charge is reduced to a misdemeanor, an individual could be eligible for probation, a plea deal, a diversionary program, and other types of alternative sentencing for Philadelphia auto theft offenses.

The Benefits of an Auto Theft Lawyer in Philadelphia

Auto left lawyers come with several benefits. They could examine the allegations that have been brought against an individual, collect and preserve any evidence that could help an individual’s case, and reduce an individual’s charge from a felony to a misdemeanor.

While auto theft penalties can seem severe, there are options for alternative sentencing for Philadelphia auto theft offenses. If you have been accused of auto theft, contact a criminal defense lawyer today. A qualified attorney could work tirelessly to minimize your charges or have them dropped. You deserve to have your freedom protected, contact a lawyer to discuss your legal options.