In this article, you can discover:
- The distinct types of theft charges under North Carolina law.
- The differences between shoplifting, larceny, and burglary.
- Potential defenses against theft charges and the possibility of expungement.
What Are The Different Types Of Theft Charges Recognized Under North Carolina Law?
In North Carolina, various theft-related charges include larceny by trick, misdemeanor larceny, felony larceny, embezzlement, and obtaining property by false pretense.
What Is The Difference Between Theft, Larceny, And Burglary In North Carolina?
Larceny is the act of trespassing to take someone else’s property with the intent to deprive them of its use permanently. On the other hand, burglary involves breaking and entering a house during nighttime to commit larceny. Essentially, burglary encompasses larceny, but the larceny itself focuses on the actual taking of another’s property.
How Does North Carolina Classify Theft Offenses Based On The Value Of The Stolen Property?
Theft offenses are classified based on the item’s value. If the stolen item’s value is less than a thousand dollars, it’s considered a misdemeanor. However, if its value exceeds a thousand dollars, or if any force was used to commit the theft, it becomes a felony.
What Distinguishes Misdemeanor From Felony Theft Charge In North Carolina?
The primary distinctions lie in the dollar amount and the presence or absence of force. Misdemeanor larceny is usually due to the theft of items valued under a thousand dollars without the use of force. Felony charges can arise from the theft of items over a thousand dollars, the use of force, or forms of trickery and misrepresentation.
How Does The Degree of Theft Charge Based On How Title Was Transferred?
The degree is determined by how the title was transferred. For example, if someone tricks another person into handing over an item (like using counterfeit money), even though the receiver has lawful possession, they obtained it under false pretenses, making it a felony. On the other hand, robbery involves forcefully taking possession. Embezzlement, like a cashier pocketing the money meant for the cash register, is a betrayal of trust and is also considered a felony.
Is There A Legal Threshold For Grand Theft In North Carolina?
In North Carolina, what might be referred to as “grand theft” elsewhere is determined by the value of the stolen property. If it’s a thousand dollars or more, it’s equivalent to grand theft. If the theft involves a vehicle, it’s treated as a separate charge: larceny of a motor vehicle.
How Does North Carolina Define Shoplifting Offenses And How Do They Differ From Traditional Theft Charges?
Shoplifting in North Carolina is the act of concealing merchandise while still in the store, even if there’s no intent to steal. The key distinction lies in the location of the act. If someone passes the point of sale, like a cash register, without paying, it becomes larceny, a more serious offense than mere shoplifting.
What Defenses Are Available Against Theft Charges In North Carolina?
Several defenses can be utilized:
- Lack of intent: If you unintentionally took an item, it cannot be considered theft.
- Misidentification: If surveillance footage falsely identifies someone, they can’t be charged.
- Mistake: Taking someone’s property mistakenly believing it’s yours isn’t theft if there’s no intent to deprive the owner permanently.
- Borrowing: If the intent was to return the item after temporary use, it can’t be labeled as theft.
Can A Theft Charge Be Expunged From A Person’s Record In North Carolina After A Certain Period?
Yes, nonviolent misdemeanors can be expunged after a certain period, typically 5 to 10 years. Those under 21 have even more options for expungement. However, the expungement laws in North Carolina have been changing and may continue to evolve.