Serving People Throughout Colorado

Call Us For Free Consultation:

Being charged with theft in Colorado comes with severe consequences if convicted. This is true regardless of whether or not the crime is charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. A theft conviction can destroy your career and cause other unexpected consequences.

Conviction of a theft crime can have especially harsh consequences on someone’s life plan and affect their housing options, employment, the ability to start a business, school needs, and professional licensing.

In Colorado, theft crimes are also called “crimes of moral turpitude.” These types of crimes can stigmatize you, and unlike other criminal convictions, like possessing marijuana, theft-related charges negatively impact your personal reputation and character.

To many, theft is considered a more serious crime than others. This is true even if they carry the same potential punishment.

If you plead guilty to a theft crime, even a minor one like shoplifting, you need to seek the help of a legal professional. At the Law Offices of Steven J. Pisani, LLC, we can provide information and answers to any questions you have, such as:

  • What are the best defenses to theft charges?
  • How can I get a petty theft charge dismissed?
  • What evidence is needed to prove theft?
  • Can you be charged with theft if the item is returned?

We will provide you with the answers to any questions you have and help you build a defense against the charges you are facing. Here you can learn more about theft charges and theft defense strategies.

Understanding Theft Crime Charges in Colorado

Theft, also called larceny, is a term that includes many different criminal defenses. The basic elements of theft in Colorado include an action that is done to deprive someone permanently of an item or money.

The law specifically states the following:

That a defendant in the State of Colorado, at or about the date and place charged, knowingly, obtained, retained, or exercised control over anything of value of another, without authorization or by threat or deception and intended to deprive the other person permanently of the use or benefit of the thing of value. 

Theft vs. Robbery vs. Burglary Charges in Colorado

As mentioned above, theft in Colorado includes taking anything of value that belongs to someone else without consent from that person. Depending on the value of the stolen property, theft may be a petty offense, a misdemeanor, or even a felony.

If force, intimidation, or threats are involved in taking property from someone, it is considered a robbery. This is always charged as a felony in Colorado.

A burglary occurs if you enter a property wrongfully to steal something or commit another crime. It is always a felony.

The potential penalties for burglary, robbery, and theft are much more serious than you may expect. They often include several years in prison in Colorado, especially in situations where someone was harmed or if the goal was to obtain any controlled substance.

Potential Penalties for Colorado Theft Convictions

You can find details related to theft in Colorado in Title 18, Article 4 of the C.R.S. The value of the items stolen depends on the possible penalties that you will face and includes the following:

  • If the value of the items stolen is under $300, it is a petty offense in Colorado.
  • If the value of the items stolen is over $300, but under $2,000, it is charged as a misdemeanor.
  • If the value of the items stolen is over $2,000, it is charged as a felony.

While the penalties for a theft conviction start low, they increase quickly as the value of stolen items increases. If the stolen property is worth $1,000,000 or more, then a conviction can result in a prison sentence of 24 years (or more).

Misdemeanor Theft Penalties in Colorado

If you are facing misdemeanor theft charges, the potential penalties include the following:

  • Class 3 misdemeanor: For theft involving over $50 and under $300 worth of goods or merchandise, you can face six months in jail or a fine of $50 to $750.
  • Class 2 misdemeanor: For theft involving over $300 and under $750 worth of goods or merchandise, you can face three to 12 months in prison and fines of $250 to $1,000.
  • Class 1 misdemeanor: For theft involving over $750 and under $2,000, you can face between six and 18 months in jail and fines of $500 to $5,000.

The district attorney prosecuting your case may wish to make the “victim whole.” This means they recover compensation on their behalf. In these cases, you may be ordered to pay restitution. The amount you will be ordered to pay can vary from one case to another, but restitution is on top of additional fines you are issued.

Potential Defenses to Theft Charges in Colorado

The best defense for theft charges in Colorado depends on the arrest circumstances. However, some of the offenses that may be effective include the following:

  • The property belonged to you.
  • Someone gave you the property.
  • You were only borrowing the property.
  • The property was not worth as much as the prosecution is claiming.

Hiring an attorney is recommended in these situations since they can evaluate the charges you face and create a custom defense strategy. This is the best way to get the quality and effective defense you need in these situations.

Hire a Criminal Defense Attorney for Help with Your Criminal Theft Charges

If you are facing criminal theft charges, our criminal defense attorney at the Law Offices of Steven J. Pisani is here to help. We can evaluate your case and help you recover the compensation you are entitled to.

Don’t wait to seek legal counsel as it can help you overcome the charges you are facing. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Read More

What Are Common Penalties for Theft in Denver?

What Is the Difference Between a Misdemeanor and a Felony?


Request a FREE Case Review