Law Office of Kimberly N. Shanklin, PLLC.
Serving Denton County Since 2002
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Theft

Theft

Chapter 31 of the Texas Penal Code defines theft related offenses.

“Theft”, as per § 31.03 of the Texas Penal Code, occurs when a person unlawfully appropriates property with intent to deprive the owner of property.

Appropriation of property is unlawful if:

  • it is without the owner's effective consent;

  • the property is stolen and the actor appropriates the property knowing it was stolen by another; or

  • property in the custody of any law enforcement agency was explicitly represented by any law enforcement agent to the actor as being stolen and the actor appropriates the property believing it was stolen by another.

Theft is a Class C misdemeanor if the value of the property stolen is less than $100.

Theft is a Class B misdemeanor if the value of the property stolen is $100 or more but less than $750, the value of the property stolen is less than $100 and the defendant has previously been convicted of any grade of theft, or the property stolen is a driver's license, commercial driver's license, or personal identification certificate issued by this state or another state.

Theft is a Class A misdemeanor if the value of the property stolen is $750 or more but less than $2,500.

Theft is a state jail felony if: the value of the property stolen is $2,500 or more but less than $30,000, or the property is less than 10 head of sheep, swine, or goats or any part thereof under the value of $30,000, regardless of value, the property is stolen from the person of another or from a human corpse or grave, including property that is a military grave marker, the property stolen is a firearm, the value of the property stolen is less than $2,500 and the defendant has been previously convicted two or more times of any grade of theft, the property stolen is an official ballot or official carrier envelope for an election, or he value of the property stolen is less than $20,000 and the property stolen is aluminum, bronze, copper, or brass.

Theft is a felony of the third degree if the value of the property stolen is $30,000 or more but less than $150,000, or the property is: cattle, horses, or exotic livestock or exotic fowl as defined by Section 142.001, Agriculture Code, stolen during a single transaction and having an aggregate value of less than $150,000, 10 or more head of sheep, swine, or goats stolen during a single transaction and having an aggregate value of less than $150,000. Additionally, theft is a third degree felony if the property is a controlled substance, having a value of less than $150,000, if stolen from a commercial building in which a controlled substance is generally stored, including a pharmacy, clinic, hospital, nursing facility, or warehouse, or a vehicle owned or operated by a wholesale distributor of prescription drugs.

Theft is a felony of the second degree if: the value of the property stolen is $150,000 or more but less than $300,000, or the value of the property stolen is less than $300,000 and the property stolen is an automated teller machine or the contents or components of an automated teller machine.

Theft is a felony of the first degree if the value of the property stolen is $300,000 or more.

There are aggravating circumstances which can cause theft to be charged in the next category of offense:

  • the actor was a public servant at the time of the offense and the property appropriated came into the actor's custody, possession, or control by virtue of his status as a public servant.

  • the actor was in a contractual relationship with government at the time of the offense and the property appropriated came into the actor's custody, possession, or control by virtue of the contractual relationship.

  • the owner of the property appropriated was at the time of the offense is an elderly individual or a non-profit organization.

  • he actor was a Medicare provider in a contractual relationship with the federal government at the time of the offense and the property appropriated came into the actor's custody, possession, or control by virtue of the contractual relationship.

  • during the commission of the offense, the actor intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly caused a fire exit alarm to sound or otherwise become activated, deactivated or otherwise prevented a fire exit alarm or retail theft detector from sounding, or used a shielding or deactivation instrument to prevent or attempt to prevent detection of the offense by a retail theft detector.

Severity of Crime

Misdemeanor c

  • Fine not to exceed $500

Misdemeanor B

  • Confinement in jail for a term not to exceed 180 days

  • Fine not to exceed $2,000

  • Both such fine and confinement

Misdemeanor A

  • Confinement in jail for a term not to exceed one year

  • Fine not to exceed $4,000

  • Both such fine and confinement

State Jail Felony

  • Confinement in a state jail for not more than two years and not less than 180 days

  • In addition to confinement, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000

Third Degree Felony

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 10 years or less than two years

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000

Second Degree FelonY

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 20 years or less than two years

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000

First Degree Felony

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for life, or

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 99 years or less than five years with the exception of aggravated sexual assault, which adds a 25-year minimum punishment if the victim is younger than 6, or younger than 14 and the offense contained threats of serious bodily injury or death, or use of a deadly weapon

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000