Grand larceny is a severe theft criminal offense in Las Vegas, NV. You commit grand larceny when you intentionally steal, take, or carry away property worth $1200 or more that is owned by another person. Using electronic means to withdraw or transfer another person's property to your possession could attract grand larceny charges under section 205.220 of Nevada criminal law.
Theft is classified as a crime of trust, meaning that you acted dishonestly, and a conviction could attract severe legal consequences. Additionally, a conviction for theft in your criminal record could prevent you from securing a job or loan when in need.
Having competent legal guidance during a grand larceny allegation could prevent you from facing a lengthy jail sentence or having your charges reduced or dismissed. At The Law Offices of Martin Hart, we will evaluate your case and build strong defenses for the best possible outcome.
Overview of Grand Larceny in Nevada
Grand theft involves an intentional act of stealing, taking, or carrying away property belonging to another person without their consent. For you to be charged with grand theft, the cost of the property you took must be worth $1200 or more. Some of the acts that could attract grand larceny charges in Nevada include:
- Removing property worth more than $1200 from a hotel without permission
- Taking away or preventing identification of livestock
- Using a credit or debit card to take money from another person's account without their permission
Nevada criminal law classifies theft as a crime of trust, meaning that you are intentionally dishonest. A conviction for theft attracts serious consequences, both legal and personal. Therefore, guidance from an attorney is crucial when facing these charges.
The prosecution must prove the following elements before you conviction:
- Wrongful taking. Before you face a conviction for violating NRS 205.220, the prosecutor must prove that you wrongfully took away property. Taking away means that you moved it a distance away from the rightful owner.
- Property belonging to another person. Proof that the item you took belonged to someone else is crucial when you are facing theft charges. You could not be charged for theft if you moved property that you believed belonged to you. Therefore, the prosecutor must establish ownership of the property in question.
- Lack of Consent. Taking away property without permission from the owner is one of the elements used to establish your criminal acts. Prosecution must prove that the owner did not consent to your taking away of an item before you face a conviction for grand larceny.
- Property value. Grand larceny charges arise when you take away another person's property worth $1200 or more. If the property’s value is lower, you face charges for petit larceny. Therefore, a prosecutor must establish the value of the property you took before the judge could convict you.
- The intent to steal. You cannot face theft charges if you did not have an intention to steal. Sometimes you take away property mistakenly with the belief that it belongs to you. Your intention to steal the property or deprive the owner of its enjoyment must be proven in your case.
Legal Penalties for Grand Larceny
In Nevada, grand larceny is a felony. The nature of your sentences will significantly depend on the value of the property you stole and the circumstances of the case. Since grand larceny has an element of fear and force, your sentence is enhanced if you caused injury or death to another person when committing the crime. If the property's value is between $1200 and $5000, you will be subjected to a prison sentence of up to four years fined an amount not exceeding $5000.
For property valued between $5000 and $25,000, you are punished with a prison sentence not exceeding five years and fines of up to $10,000. If the property you stole was worth more than $25,000 but less than $100,000, you would face a prison sentence of up to ten years. Your prison sentence could increase to 20 years if the property is valued at $100,000 or more.
Besides the legal penalties associated with grand larceny, you could be barred from voting or owning a gun after a conviction. Grand larceny is classified as a crime of moral turpitude and an aggravated felony. Therefore, if you are an immigrant and you face a conviction for grand theft, you could face deportation. Thus, immigrants arrested for grand theft will require competent legal guidance.
Depending on your case's factors and the defenses you present, the prosecutor could be willing to lessen your charges from grand theft to petty larceny. If you do not have a prior conviction for theft and pay full restitution, you will have a better chance to reduce or dismiss your charges.
Regardless of the value of the property you allegedly stole, you will be required to compensate the property owner off the full value of the items after a conviction.
Common Defenses against NRS 205.220 Charges
Grand larceny is a severe crime in Nevada. The legal consequences that accompany a conviction for the offense could have a significant effect on your life. Therefore, it is in our best interests to seek competent legal guidance and representation. All arrests for theft do not result in a conviction. Possible grand larceny defense strategies that could help you have the charges reduced or dismissed include:
You Owned the Property
You cannot steal property that rightfully belongs to you. Sometimes, the issue of property ownership becomes complicated when more than one person claims to own it. If you had a reasonable belief that you owned the property, you could not be convicted. As long as the prosecutor does not have sufficient proof to establish that the property belongs to someone else, your charges could be dropped.
The Value of Property Does not Qualify for Grand Larceny
Sometimes you can be wrongfully charged with grand theft instead of petit larceny. In other cases, victims of theft crimes may exaggerate the value of property to gain more if the court orders restitution. If you can prove that the item you took was valued less than $1200, your charges could be reduced to a petit larceny that carries fewer penalties.
Unlawful Search and Seizure
When you are suspected of committing a crime, the police should not search for your property without a legal warrant. In most cases, the police fail to follow the rules, and they haunt for evidence without authorization. Sometimes they may neglect the warrant by searching beyond the scope. Your attorney could file a motion to suppress the evidence if your grand larceny charges are based on illegally acquired evidence. When using this defense, the ultimate goal is to create doubt in the evidence presented by the prosecutor and have the charges dismissed.
You Lack the Intention to Steal
Taking another person's property by mistake is not a crime. Your intention to steal is one of the key elements that need to be proven before a conviction. Even though an intention to steal is not concrete, the court will use circumstantial evidence to determine whether you had the criminal intent. Some of the circumstantial evidence includes your behavior during the arrest, testimony from the eyewitnesses, and the police report.
Offenses Related to Grand Larceny in Nevada
With the large urban centers and a high number of tourists visiting Las Vegas every year, countless scenarios could lead to grand larceny allegations. Larceny is one of the various theft crimes with which you can be charged in Nevada. Some offenses that could be charged alongside or instead of grand theft include:
You can be arrested and charged with petty theft if you intentionally take away property belonging to someone else. The value of the property in question should be worth less than $1200. Some of the situations that give rise to petty larceny charges include shoplifting or taking away domesticated animals.
Petty larceny is a misdemeanor, and a conviction attracts a jail sentence of six months and court fines of up to $1000. If you face grand theft charges, you can work towards having your charges reduced to petty larceny that carries lesser penalties.
Robbery - NRS 200.380
Robbery is the act of unlawfully taking another person's property in their presence by use of force or fear. In most cases, victims of robbery surrender their property for fear of injury. When you are faced with robbery charges, the prosecutor must establish that you took the property in the owner's presence and used force to prevent them from resisting. Sometimes, grand larceny charges could be accompanied by robbery charges if you took the property in the owner's presence.
Robbery is a class B felony in Nevada. A conviction for the offense attracts a prison sentence of up to fifteen years. However, if you use a deadly weapon or firearm to carry out the crime, your punishment will be enhanced. Robbery charges are severe, and having a conviction in your record is detrimental. Therefore, legal guidance will go a long way for you.
Possession of Stolen Property – NRS 205.275
Nevada criminal law makes it a crime to receive, buy, or possess property they know is stolen. The court assumes that you knew the property was stolen if you have items from the same property whose identification numbers are defaced. You can be convicted of owning stolen property even when you were not involved in stealing.
The penalties that accompany a conviction for possessing stolen property vary depending on the value of items in question. If you own property less than $1200, you will be punished with a six months jail sentence and fines of up to $1000. The jail sentence could exceed 20 years if you possess stolen property worth $100,000.
If you are battling charges for possession of the stolen property, you can attempt to have the charges dismissed by proving your lack of knowledge that the property was stolen.
NRS 205-300 defines embezzlement as stealing property that was entrusted to you. Most cases of embezzlement stem when employees steal from their employers. Embezzlement could also occur between friends, family, or co-workers.
Like grand theft, embezzlement is punished depending on the value of the property that was allegedly embezzled. Acts of embezzlement have immigration consequences. If a non-citizen defendant is convicted for the crime, they risk being deported. Fortunately, most theft crimes in Nevada can be sealed. This will protect you from the consequences of having the conviction in your record.
In an embezzlement case, the district attorney has the responsibility to prove your guilt without a reasonable doubt. If your defense attorney can establish that you used the property as intended by the owner, the charges may not stand.
A bait purse sting is when the police officers plant valuable items in a public place to trap thieves. It is a crime to take bait purses placed by law enforcers in Nevada. The value of the bait determines the severity of the penalties of taking a bait purse.
Find a Criminal Defense Attorney Near Me
Larceny is a general term used to describe theft crimes in Nevada. Depending on the value of the property you stole, you can be accused of petty or grand larceny. If you or your loved one is facing grand larceny charges you could face severe legal and personal consequences. Fortunately for you, an arrest does not always result in a conviction.
With guidance from a competent criminal defense attorney, you could build solid legal defenses and have your penalties reduced or charges dismissed. If you are battling grand larceny charges in Las Vegas, Nevada, finding quality legal guidance should be a priority. At the Law Offices of Martin Hart, we provide legal advice and representation to protect your rights and help you avoid a conviction. Contact us today at 702-380-4278 to discuss your case.