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Auto theft is very common in the city of Los Angeles. It is estimated that over 29,000 vehicles are stolen within the city each year. Vehicle theft accounts for more than 23 percent of property crimes in the city, and 18 percent of all crime in Los Angeles. According to FBI statistics, a vehicle is stolen within Los Angeles approximately every 22 seconds. Over 88 percent of stolen vehicles in Los Angeles are recovered, and 50 percent of them have been stripped or damaged in some way.
The state of California statute that defines Grand Theft Auto in Penal Code 487(d)(1) PC. It includes a number of different elements. It occurs when a person takes a vehicle that is lawfully owned by another person. The vehicle involved in the theft has a value of over $950. There was no permission given by the vehicle’s owner to take it. The vehicle was taken with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of it or take the vehicle away for a time that would last long enough for the vehicle’s owner to be deprived of its value. The vehicle was intentionally moved and kept from the owner for an extended period of time.
Other Grand Theft Auto
When a vehicle is stolen, it can be considered grand theft auto by larceny. A person can unlawfully gain control of a vehicle and be charged with grand theft auto by false pretense. This happens if a person uses lies or deceit to convince a vehicle’s owner to give up their vehicle. Someone uses a trick to convince an individual to give up possession of their vehicle. It is also possible to be charged with grand theft auto when a person uses embezzlement to obtain someone’s vehicle. This is considered being in a position of trust to gain use of another person’s vehicle. Police are not concerned with a vehicle’s purchase history. They are only concerned with locating a stolen vehicle and arresting the driver.
A person accused of committing grand theft auto could be charged with a felony or misdemeanor depending on the circumstances, and if a person has any prior grand theft auto convictions. Grand theft auto is often charged as a felony. When someone is found guilty, they can be sentenced from sixteen months up to three years in jail. They can also receive a fine of up to $10,000 or a combination of jail time and a fine. Should a person be found guilty of misdemeanor grand theft auto, they could spend a year in jail. Should the value of the vehicle be more than $65,000, one more year in prison can be added. If the value of a vehicle is over $200,000, a convicted person could get an extra two years in prison.
If it can be proven a defendant took a vehicle and did not intend to permanently keep it from the true owner, they may not be guilty under California’s grand theft auto statute. If it can be proven the defendant had consent or permission of the vehicle’s owner to use it, they will not be guilty of grand theft auto. In some cases, it has been proven the vehicle was actually owned by the person accused of grand theft auto. It has also been proven that a defendant had a valid reason to believe they were actually the vehicle’s owner. It’s also possible to prove a person has been falsely accused of illegally taking a vehicle. This often happens when a person is arrested after purchasing a vehicle they did not know was stolen.
It’s important to know that grand theft auto is often charged as a felony and comes with serious punishment. When facing these charges, it is time to contact an attorney. They will know how to analyze the facts and develop an effective legal defense.