Theft Offenses in New Hampshire
Theft can be generally defined as the taking of the property of another person with the intent to deprive that person of the property. You can refer to New Hampshire Criminal Code Chapter 637 to find a detailed description of the different kinds of theft. Our experienced criminal defense attorneys will discuss your theft charge with you and explain what the State must be able to prove in order for you to be convicted of the offense.
Classifying Theft Crimes
In New Hampshire, theft can be charged as either a felony or a misdemeanor depending on a number of factors including the value of the property and the number of prior offenses.
Value of Property: Persons who are accused of theft in cases where the property is valued at less than $1000 will typically be charged with a misdemeanor. Persons accused of theft in cases where the property is valued at greater than $1000 but less than $1500 will typically be charged with a Class B felony. Persons accused of theft in cases where the property is valued at greater than $1500 will be charged with a Class A felony.
Prior Offenses. New Hampshire is a “three strikes” state. This means that if a person has been charged and convicted of theft two times and is then charged with another theft offense, that person will automatically be charged with a felony. This is true even if the property at issue in the case is valued at less than $1000.
Finally, theft can be charged as a felony if the property stolen is a firearm.
A Criminal Defense Attorney on Penalties if Convicted
Persons convicted of misdemeanor theft can be sentenced to a maximum of 12 months in jail and/or may be forced to pay a fine not in excess of $2000. Persons convicted of Class B felony theft can face 3 ½ to 7 years in prison. Persons convicted of Class A felony theft can be sentenced from 7 ½ to 15 years in prison.
Defending Against Theft Charges as Discussed by a Criminal Defense Lawyer
If you have been charged with theft, you should contact a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. In cases involving theft, we will evaluate the factual allegations, and we will review the evidence against you to determine whether or not the State can prove every element of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. If the State is unable to satisfy its burden, then under the law you cannot be convicted. Our criminal defense lawyers may also attempt to negotiate a plea bargain for you. If the State is unwilling to negotiate a plea, then we will prepare your case to trial and provide you with the best defense possible under the law.
Contact a Criminal Defense Lawyer
Our criminal defense attorneys have successfully represented criminal defendants throughout the state of New Hampshire. If you have been charged with a criminal offense, call the Law Office of Chadwick-Fricano-Weber at (603) 880-6100 to schedule an initial consultation.