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Orange County Bar Association

Is it Petty Theft or Grand Theft?

Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo
Arrested man

Many times when we are watching television news or a crime drama we hear the phrases petty theft or grand theft. In most states the value of the stolen item(s) will determine what crime will be charged. In California the most common theft charge is Petty Theft (Penal Code Section 488); this can only be charged as a misdemeanor. It carries a maximum of 1 year in jail. Generally speaking if the item(s) stolen are $400.00 or less then the matter can be charged as a Petty Theft. But you need to understand: A PETTY THEFT VIOLATION WITH A PRIOR PETTY THEFT CONVICTION CAN CAUSE THE NEW CASE TO BE FILED AS A FELONY AND THE CLIENT SENT TO STATE PRISON.

Here is a testimonial from one person who was charged with petty theft in Orange County, California.

“I was accused of petty theft [a violation of Penal Code Section 484(a)-488 a misdemeanor] and told to appear in the Orange County Superior court. It was alleged that I took an item worth over $300.00 from a store without paying for it. The maximum jail sentence for this crime is 6 months in jail. I hired Mr. Bruzzo because of his years of experience in the Orange County courts and his familiarity with all the District Attorneys. I knew that only a lawyer practicing in Orange County for quite some time would be able to get me the result I desired. In addition, as I am not a citizen there would have been serious immigration consequences for me if I had been convicted of this crime. Mr. Bruzzo went to court several times in an effort to negotiate my case. Thankfully, he was able to get me a complete DISMISSAL after just a few court appearances. All I had to do was complete a short class and give a DNA sample. Mr. Bruzzo took care of everything from the beginning to the end. Thanks to him, my record is clean.

I am happy to recommend Mr. Bruzzo to anyone facing a criminal charge, especially petty theft.” ~~ RT August 13, 2009

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