If Texas law enforcement officers have arrested you in connection with a theft offense, you are likely concerned about how this incident will play out in the days, weeks, and months ahead. As you face an uncertain future, thoughts of spending time behind bars, paying expensive fines, or facing other negative consequences may play out in your mind. Before you imagine the worst, contact a skilled South Houston criminal defense lawyer to ensure your rights remain protected at every step of the criminal justice process.
What is Considered a Theft Offense Under Texas Law?
First, it’s important to understand the legal definition of theft in Texas. Title 7, Section 31.03 of the Texas Penal Code states, “A person commits [theft] if he unlawfully appropriates property with intent to deprive the owner of property.” Many offenses fall under this definition, such as shoplifting, attempting to write bad checks, accepting or purchasing property you know was stolen, general theft, and more. Penalties for theft convictions depend on the nature of the offense, the amount of money or value of the property involved, and whether the defendant has any previous criminal theft convictions.
Know and Exercise Your Constitutional Rights
While you may think you can explain your way out of a theft arrest, doing so can actually make the situation worse for you. Law enforcement may try to reassure you that they’re “on your side” or willing to listen to your side of the story, but they can use any statements you make to build a case against you. Instead, exercise your right to remain silent and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney right away to discuss your situation. Avoid discussing the situation with anyone until you speak with your attorney. Together, you can develop the most effective legal strategy to obtain a favorable outcome.
How a Texas Attorney Can Defend Your Future
Once you’ve spoken with your attorney, you can breathe easier knowing that you are in capable and experienced hands. Your attorney will assess all the details of your case, looking for potential violations of your rights during the arrest or other factors that could impact the course of the case. Together, you will explore your options for having the charges against you dismissed or reduced. Should the matter proceed, your attorney will develop a solid defensive strategy aimed at securing you the best possible outcome given the specifics of the case. Don’t leave your future up to chance—reach out to a trusted Pearland criminal defense lawyer today to get started.
If you need help defending yourself against theft charges in Pearland or Brazoria County, call the Law Offices of Keith G. Allen, PLLC, today at (832) 230-0075 to arrange a free consultation with an experienced criminal defense attorney.