Theft is a more serious charge than many people realize. Even misdemeanor charges could result in serious fines, jail time and a criminal record. It is never too soon to start protecting your rights. We recommend that you seek legal representation immediately if you believe you might be under investigation. The criminal defense attorneys at the Columbus, Ohio law firm of Tyack Law offer experienced and strategic advocacy to defendants facing theft and property crimes charges.
Our criminal defense attorneys represent defendants facing a wide range of property crime charges, including:
- Juvenile crimes
- Credit card fraud
- Bad checks
- Breaking and entering
- Criminal trespass
- Criminal mischief
Property Offenses in Ohio
Property crimes fall into the three general categories of theft, arson, and vandalism. A dedicated Columbus, Ohio-based property crime lawyer from Tyack Law can represent a defendant against any one of these accusations.
Common property crime charges in Ohio include:
- Theft and Larceny: “Larceny” means taking something that belongs to another person and keeping it without permission. The thing taken can be money, possessions, or services such as hotel stays or assistance program benefits. Securing a prosecution requires showing that the person accused intended to take the product, services, or money. Almost all of the Ohio statutes that relate to larceny use the term “theft,” since it means the same thing as larceny. Alleged crimes prosecuted as thefts usually do not involve the use of force or threats of violence, though a majority involve fraud. Specific actions that fall into this category of alleged criminal offenses include motor vehicle theft, shoplifting, embezzlement, and credit card fraud. Generally, thefts of money, goods, or services in amounts greater than $1,000 are prosecuted as felonies. This is true for burglaries, as well.
- Burglary: Issuing a burglary charge requires having evidence that the person accused of the crime was trespassing while attempting to commit theft. Trespassing means entering any place without the owner or occupant’s permission, such as going into a store after hours or entering a home through a window while the occupants are away or sleeping. Alleged crimes that get prosecuted as burglaries include breaking and entering, safecracking, and stealing from vending machines.
- Robbery: A robbery is a theft or burglary committed by force or while threatening violence. Defendants who face robbery charges often get charged with separate assault and weapons offenses. Police and prosecutors usually treat robberies as felonies, and they always do when an injury or death occurs.
- Arson: In Ohio, the arson statutes cover using fire or explosives to cause or try to cause harm to people or property. Securing a conviction requires the prosecutor to prove that the defendant meant to set the fire or trigger the explosion. The alleged intent can be to injure, kill, or defraud, such as setting a fire to have a justification for filing insurance claims. Arson nearly always gets prosecuted as a felony offense.
- Vandalism: Any destruction, defacement, or degrading of someone else’s property without that person’s permission counts as vandalism. This covers everything from breaking windows and scrawling graffiti to dumping garbage. Ohio law treats all alleged acts of vandalism as felonies.
Building Your Defense
We will immediately begin building your defense. Our experienced criminal defense attorneys will consult witnesses, review police records, obtain any video surveillance evidence, and use your account of the events to build that defense. We are prepared to take any case to trial to aggressively defend your rights. We will investigate to determine whether law enforcement officials violated any of your rights while obtaining evidence. If your rights were violated to obtain evidence, it cannot be used in court. If law enforcement officials are investigating you for a theft or property-related crime or if you have been charged already it is never too soon to start your defense.
If you have been charged with a property offense in Columbus, Ohio, contact the Tyack Law Firm to discuss your criminal defense. Our criminal defense attorneys are knowledgeable and experienced with Ohio’s property laws and will make every effort to fight the charges against you. Call the Tyack Law Firm at (614) 221-1342 or complete the form below for a consultation about your property crime related offense.