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Theft Crime Defense Lawyers in Phoenix, AZ

Have you been arrested for theft in Maricopa County, AZ? The crime of Theft in Arizona, covers an extensive range of conduct, and a conviction for theft in Arizona can have far-reaching ramifications. Whether a theft charge resulted from deceit, misrepresentation, or physical action, a Phoenix theft lawyer can explain what you are facing, and help you navigate the court system while protecting your rights.

Get an Aggressive Defense for Gilbert Theft Crime Charges

Being charged with theft can affect many aspects of your life. If you are facing theft crimes or a related criminal charge, call us today. A theft attorney in Phoenix can help you handle all types of theft cases, including:

Robbery involves the act of taking the property of another from them or in their immediate presence and against their will, with threats or use of force against any person with intent either to coerce surrender of property or to prevent resistance to such person taking or retaining property.

Shoplifting involves knowingly obtaining goods (without paying) in an establishment where merchandise is displayed for sale. It can take many forms, such as changing the price on a label, transferring goods to a nearby container, and removing goods from an establishment without paying.

Unlawfully entering or remaining on a residential structure with the intent to commit theft is considered burglary in the second degree. If the act is committed while in possession of firearms or explosives, the crime is considered burglary in the first degree.


Extortion involves obtaining something (such as money, property, valuables) through force or threat. The threat could be physical injury or death, damage to property, or accusing someone of a crime such as a drug trafficking or sexual harassment.

Auto Theft/Joyriding

In Arizona, Auto theft is generally referred to as theft of means of transportation. without lawful authority. This means the taking of a vehicle for a joyride, without lawful authority, is considered a felony whether you are a driver or a passenger. The main difference between auto theft and joyriding is the intent to keep a vehicle (specifically, the intent permanently to deprive).

Even if a crime does not result in significant jail time, even a misdemeanor level theft conviction can be problematic in completing background checks or obtaining professional licensing or security clearances. However, hope is not lost if you are facing theft charges in Gilbert, Phoenix, Mesa, or other cities in central Arizona. A theft defense attorney can help you comprehend your legal rights and options to deal with your charges, including negotiating with the assigned prosecutors in the case working hard to get your charges dismissed or reduced.

Arizona Theft Laws

Under Arizona Revised Statutes § 13-1802, theft is the willing and knowing act of depriving someone of their property and controlling that property with the intent to deny the owner of it. Other examples of theft include: 

  • Wrongfully using, altering, or destroying the services or property of another entrusted to them
  • Obtaining services or property of another by means of material misrepresentation 
  • Coming into control of lost, misplaced, or misdelivered property without attempts to notify the new owner
  • Controlling the property of another knowing that it was stolen 
  • Obtaining services known to be available only for compensation (without paying). 
  • Knowingly taking control, title, use, or management of a vulnerable person’s property. 

Theft can take many forms in Arizona, including:

  • Armed robbery
  • Burglary
  • Credit card fraud
  • Embezzlement
  • Identity theft
  • Petty theft with a prior conviction
  • Robbery
  • Shoplifting or petty theft
  • Theft of means of transportation (i.e. grand theft auto)
  • Vehicular theft

At the Law Offices of Brandon White, P.C, we understand theft laws and can help you fight whatever charges you are fighting. 

Call a Phoenix Theft Crime Lawyer for a Consultation

Just because you are charged with a crime does not mean you will be convicted. An experienced theft lawyer in Phoenix can fight for you. You deserve to know all the options available to you, and your case deserves the best defense possible. If you’d like to speak with an experienced lawyer about your case, contact us today. 

Possible Theft Crime Penalties and Consequences in Gilbert, Arizona

Whether or not theft is a misdemeanor or a felony in Arizona is determined by the monetary value of the property stolen. Arizona Revised Statutes ARS § 13 – 1802 mandates that a theft shall be classified as a misdemeanor unless the dollar value of what was stolen exceeds $1000. Exceptions include instances where an animal or a firearm is stolen - these instances will be charged as a felony. Penalties can be elevated if an assault occurred during the theft crime. 

Below are the different classes of theft in Arizona and the potential penalties: 

Class 1 Misdemeanor Theft: Sometimes called petty theft, a class 1 misdemeanor theft is the lowest level crime of theft. Penalties for those convicted include up to six months in jail, fines up to $2,500, and restitution. It is common for a plea agreement for a first offense misdemeanor to include minimal jail time, a fine, probation, and repayment for/of the item that was stolen. 

Class 6 Felony Theft: Theft of property or services with a value of $1,000 to $2,000. Penalties for those convicted include 4 months to 2 years of incarceration and fines up to up to $150,000. 

Class 5 Felony Theft: Theft of property or services with a value of $2,000 to $3,000. Penalties for those convicted include 6 months to 2.5 years in prison and fines up to up to $150,000. 

Class 4 Felony Theft: Theft of property or services with a value of $3,000 to $4,000. Penalties for those convicted include 2 to 3.75 years of incarceration and fines up to up to $150,000. 

Class 3 Felony Theft: Theft of property or services with a value of $4,000 to $25,000. Penalties for those convicted include two to 8.5 years in prison and fines up to $150,000. 

Class 2 Felony Theft: Theft of property or services with a value of $25,000 or more. Penalties for those convicted include three to 12.5 years of incarceration and fines up to $150,000. 

Defenses to Theft Charges in Phoenix, AZ

Prosecutors in theft cases bear the burden of proving that the theft occurred beyond a reasonable doubt. The prosecutor must demonstrate that the defendant possessed the items and that they did not have permission to do so.

There are numerous ways to contest theft charges. The simplest way is to show that you never possessed the items in question. Another defense is possible if the defendant claims to have possession of the property by legal means. For example if there is evidence that you have a bill or sale or a receipt, showing ownership, etc.  Some additional defenses are available to theft charges in Arizona: 

  • Mistaken Identity 
  • Insufficient Evidence 
  • Violations of Constitutional Rights
  • Presence Defense (at the scene but did not participate)
  • Mental State (you had no knowledge or desire to commit a crime)

With the proper preparation, It may also be possible to contest the charges before the case goes to trial, meaning during the pre-trial negotiation stage of the case. An experienced Gilbert larceny attorney could aim to exclude evidence by arguing that the police work that led to its discovery was illegal. If granted by the Court, the Judge can actually preclude the evidence from coming in at trial, thereby negatively affecting the prosecutor’s case against you.

How Gilbert Defense Attorneys Can Assist with Theft Charges?

We believe all of our clients, as well as potential clients, should be informed. You should understand the scope of your charges. Before we can evaluate the case, we will discuss not only the “Cliff’s Notes” of your case but the relevant specific details including: 

  • The events leading up to your arrest 
  • The arrest itself and the officer’s conduct and actions on-scene
  • Your criminal history 
  • Your educational, employment, and life history 
  • Immigration issues 

We have handled many theft cases in Arizona and know what to do, what to ask, and how to position yourself for the best outcome. We understand how stressful facing these serious charges can be, but we stand by our clients every step of the way. 

Let Us Fight For You

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I just had a telephone consultation with Mr. White and he took the time to explain to me every option I had to resolve a photo radar ticket I recieved in Mesa. I would not hesitate to recommend him to anyone seeking legal advice. Thanks again Brandon, I appreciate the honesty and clear communication we had.

William - Phoenix, Arizona


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The whole staff at Brandon White is to be commended……They were thorough with my Traffic Case and kept in touch , communicating the possible outcomes and strategies. I would recommend them to anyone that needs legal help in a Traffic Civil or Criminal situation.

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The team of Brandon White is a wonderful team. They help my husband a lot and solve all the problems about the traffice case. Every member is so nice and patient. Our English are not good . They explain everything for us and send emails to tell us in detail. I really, really appreciate them and the price is cheap and fine. And no more other fees. Thank you very much!

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I’m Extremely satisfied with Brandon white and his team I’m from California and got a traffic ticket in Arizona they took care of everything and were able to get my ticket dismissed Great people and very helpful.

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Contact Experienced Phoenix Theft Crimes Lawyers Near You Today

Arizona takes theft crimes seriously. You deserve an experienced and knowledgeable theft defense lawyer fighting for you. If you or someone you love has been charged with theft, contact the Law Offices of Brandon White, P.C. to schedule a free strategy session with one of our Phoenix theft attorneys. We can answer your questions and explain your available options to defend your rights and build a strong defense against a charge. Don’t go it alone, call us today.

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