If you are charged with Theft by Deception-false impression F-1, and Theft by Deception-Leased Property F-1 in PA , is jail time a possibility?
Question Details: Pleaded not guilty, it is my first offense and what happened was an accident. I had video game that I rented and was taking a bunch of my old games to a trading store for credit and the game I rented I accidently took to the trading store. Tried to explain and make amends but they took it to the police.....I have court in June....do I need a lawyer and do you think I will go to jail if found guilty?
You failed to mention the value of the item and your age (are you a juvenile). This would all factor in to any sentence that you may receive. Also, first time offenders can be given "diversion", whereby if you comply with all terms of your probation your record can be cleared. Additionally, there is also something known as "expungement" which could clear your record under certain circumstances. Having a criminal record will affect you for the rest of your life (licensing, job applications,etc)
But the above can be complicated matters. This is why you need an attorney. He might even be able to get the charges thrown out due to a technicality or have the charges reduced.
As for possible jail time:
The penalties for theft category crimes generally vary by the value of the items involved in the theft.
Any theft of a firearm charge is a felony has particularly serious penalties attached. Any theft of a car/automobile/motorcycle or other vehicle is a felony.
Theft charges of items valued at over $2000 are usually Felony 3 charges (maximum penalty 7 years in prison)
Theft charges of items valued at over $200 are usually Misdemeanor 1 charges (maximum penalty 5 years in prison)
Theft charges of items valued at over $50 are usually Misdemeanor 2 charges (maximum penalty 3 years in prison)
Theft charges of items valued at under $50 may be Misdemeanor 3 charges (maximum penalty 1 years in prison) or may be classified as summary offenses.
As you can see, most lesser value theft charges are misdemeanors, and penalties for theft under $50 in value are typically a summary offense, though they may also be misdemeanor charges