Fairfax Auto Theft Lawyer
In Fairfax, theft of an automobile is a separate charge from grand larceny. Auto theft is simply the taking and moving away of a vehicle that belongs to someone else with the intent to deprive them of that vehicle. Although there is a statutory threshold for the value of an item in Virginia, it is so low that any theft of an automobile is considered grand larceny. The difference between grand larceny charges and misdemeanor charges is the value of the item that is taken.
If you were accused of stealing a car, you need legal representation. Contact a Fairfax auto theft lawyer today to discuss your case and begin working towards a resolution. With a dedicated criminal attorney by your side, you could assert your rights and raise a strong defense against your charges.
Auto Theft vs. Larceny Charges
As with other larceny charges, in order to prove the offense of auto theft, the prosecution must prove all of the elements beyond a reasonable doubt. The prosecution has to prove that property belonging to the alleged victim was taken by the accused, without the victim’s permission, and with the intent to deprive that victim of the property in the future. Theft of an automobile is treated the same as grand larceny is in Fairfax for most intents and purposes.
Possible Consequences of an Auto Theft Conviction
An individual who is convicted of theft of an automobile faces the same penalties as grand larceny – a maximum penalty of up to 20 years in prison. After conviction, the judge will consult the Virginia Sentencing Guidelines which will suggest a wide range of punishment for larceny charges depending on an individual’s criminal record. Someone who is charged with theft of an automobile can expect to face an enhanced penalty in most cases.
Any individual who is convicted of felony auto theft in Fairfax can expect to have a period of three years of active probation with the court and pay full restitution for any damages caused by their offense. For example, an individual who stole a car and wrecked it would be expected to serve their sentence, serve at least a three-year period of probation after their sentence, and pay the owner back for the full price of the vehicle. Additionally, individuals could experience consequences even after they have served their time. Convicted felons may lose certain rights and have difficulty finding housing or employment in the future.
Reach Out to a Fairfax Auto Theft Attorney Today
Many people facing theft charges believe they can simply explain their side of the story to police and handle the case without representation. However, the best way to avoid incriminating yourself and making the situation worse is to retain a Fairfax auto theft lawyer from the outset of a case. The earlier a skilled lawyer gets involved, the better they can protect your interests. Before speaking with police or investigators, you should consult with an experienced attorney.