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Theft Crimes
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Orlando Theft Defense Lawyer

A Brief Summary of The Following Article

  • Various Charges: A wide variety of theft charges exist, from petit theft and grand theft to property theft and white-collar crimes. Each carries potential misdemeanor or felony classifications based on the value of stolen goods and specific circumstances.
  • Legal Penalties: Consequences for theft in Florida range from fines and probation to jail time, with severity depending on factors like injury presence, repeat offenses, or weapon use, and the value of the stolen property influencing the charge level.
  • Defense Strategies: Possible defenses include proving consent, lack of intent, mistaken identity, voluntary abandonment, entrapment, equal ownership, intoxication, insufficient evidence, lawful purpose, or necessity, highlighting the complexity of crafting a legal defense.
  • Attorney Assistance: An experienced attorney plays a crucial role in theft cases. Strategies include interviewing witnesses, investigating the prosecutor’s case,  negotiating pleas, and aiming to achieve the best possible outcome for the Defendant.

When facing theft charges in Orlando, it’s crucial to have a knowledgeable and experienced legal advocate on your side. The Wiseman Law Firm, led by a seasoned attorney with a deep understanding of the criminal justice system, offers unparalleled legal representation in theft cases. Drawing on extensive trial experience, including numerous cases with favorable outcomes including dismissals and reduced charges, we provide a robust defense for those accused of theft. You have legal options, and we want to support you in fighting for your rights.

Our commitment to our clients’ rights makes them a leading choice for anyone seeking a competent Orlando theft lawyer. We offer over two decades of trial-tested experience in defending clients against various criminal charges in central Florida. With a commitment to personalized advocacy and deep legal knowledge, we specialize in delivering aggressive legal representation. Attorney Simon Wiseman, a former prosecutor with experience in over 50 trials, uses insider knowledge of the criminal justice system to achieve favorable outcomes.

Get Theft Defense Services in Florida

Theft charges can encompass a wide range of offenses, from petit theft and grand theft to  property theft  and white-collar crimes. In general, if an individual unlawfully takes property belonging to another individual,  they can be charged with theft. Theft or crimes relating to stolen property can be charged as misdemeanors or felonies, depending on the value of the stolen goods and whether any aggravating or mitigating circumstances were involved in the act.

Theft charges can include:

Charged for theft? Your first consultation is FREE. Contact our Orlando theft crime attorney now!

With over 15 years of experience, our Orlando theft attorney at The Wiseman Law Firm has defended clients from a wide variety of theft offenses. No matter how complex or challenging your charges may seem, we can help you aggressively defend your charges and help you avoid the maximum penalties.

Penalties for Theft in Florida

A conviction of theft may result in jail time, probation, fines, and restitution to the victim. If anyone was injured, if you are a repeat offender, or if a weapon was used during the commission of the crime, you may be facing harsher penalties. The monetary value of any stolen goods may also impact how serious potential consequences might be. Petty theft will result in lesser consequences than those for grand theft, for example.

Stolen property valued at less than $300 and more than $100 may be charged as misdemeanor theft charges, which means you could be facing up to a year in jail. If the stolen goods are valued at more than $300, then the offense may be charged as a felony. Felonies include at least a year in jail. Consequences will also vary based on whether you face a first-degree felony, second-degree felony, or third-degree felony.

Some court systems will also require you to enroll into a diversion or intervention program or partake in community service. To avoid serious consequences, we recommend seeking support from an Orlando theft crime defense lawyer.

Defenses for Theft

If you have been charged with theft, you may wonder if there are any defenses you can utilize to reduce your odds of conviction or the severity of consequences. Especially if you get valuable and aggressive defense from an attorney, these suggestions may be useful. The following defenses may be useful, depending on your specific circumstances and needs relating to the charges. 

Consent to Take the Item or Items

If an individual has consented to you taking an item or has even gifted the item to you in some way, you may not be held liable for theft. When someone has consented to you taking an item outside of any duress or pressure, this is much less likely to be considered theft in the eyes of the law.

Lack of Intent

Your charges may be reduced or dismissed if you did not intend to take possession of something belonging to someone else. For example, you might pick up an item you know belongs to you but mistakenly also take possession of another item entangled with it. In cases where you are moving quickly or are not completely paying attention to your actions, your defense may be believable.

Mistaken Identity

In cases where you are mistakenly identified as a suspect for a crime, you might argue that you were not the individual responsible. When this is genuinely true, the court is likely to drop the charges that have been put against you. Instead, action should be taken to identify the truly liable individual who is guilty of theft of the item or items.

Voluntary Abandonment

Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to successfully argue the item was voluntarily abandoned. This may be especially effective in more remote locations, places where individuals will throw away items, or other similar circumstances. However, this may be a more difficult argument to make if it is more likely that someone has accidentally left an item behind or still has the item on their person.


There are cases where a government official or other powerful entity forces an individual to participate in activities they would not otherwise complete. If you were forced to take an item by another party, you might be able to successfully argue you were the victim of entrapment of some kind.

Equal Ownership

In cases where you share ownership with a person, your charges for theft may be reduced or dismissed. For example, taking a vehicle you share with a friend or spouse may not constitute theft, especially in cases where you have communicated or negotiated use for the car. This may also apply to circumstances involving other types of items and possessions.


While intoxication does not mean you are innocent of a crime, it may reduce the severity of your penalties after conviction. Those under the influence of a mind-altering substance are less likely to act as they typically would, so you may face fewer consequences if you can adequately demonstrate you were intoxicated at the time of the incident.

Insufficient Evidence

If you have only been accused of a crime but adequate evidence has not been presented, you might make the argument that the presented information does not support the charges.

Lawful Purpose

In some cases, individuals might be charged with theft when they took necessary action in favor of the law. For example, law enforcement officers may use a motor vehicle not belonging to them when a car chase is necessary to neutralize an otherwise dangerous situation. There may be additional circumstances where taking and using an item to maintain the law is acceptable. If you are able to argue this defense effectively, you might face reduced or dismissed charges.

Acting Out of Necessity

There are, unfortunately, circumstances that require individuals to act out of necessity and desperation. Especially in cases where you are charged with theft for taking food, personal care products, clothing, or items for other dependents, you may receive fewer or no penalties. 

Work With a Qualified Lawyer

Regardless of your circumstances and the choices you make with your defenses, we strongly recommend you work with a qualified criminal defense attorney. The Wiseman Law Firm can ensure the defenses you select are best for you, represent on your behalf, and demonstrate you in a better light. 

What Are the Consequences for Grand Theft in Florida?

If you are convicted of grand theft in Florida, you can face serious jail time depending on the degree of felony that you receive.

Possible jail sentences for grand theft in Florida:

  • Third-degree grand theft: punishable by up to 5 years in prison
  • Second-degree grand theft: punishable by up to 15 years in prison
  • First-degree grand theft: punishable by up to 30 years in prison

In some cases, additional consequences may also apply. For example, the court may take away your driver’s license or reduce other rights after a conviction. For assistance reducing jail time and other consequences related to your charges, don’t hesitate to contact The Wiseman Law Firm for help. Our firm is dedicated to reducing consequences and decreasing the likelihood of conviction for charges.

What Else Does Florida Law Say About Theft Charges?

In addition to information about penalties, Florida statutes and legal documents also disclose statements and definitions about theft. 

Theft may also include a person’s efforts to tamper with utility machinery and parts, including pipes, meters, wires, lines, and transformers. This is noted in Chapter 812.14. It may also be considered theft to take advantage of another person’s utilities for his or her own use. Additional charges apply if the theft contributed to the growth of cannabis.

Further, it is outlined in Chapter 18 that usage of these utilities may be estimated to determine the extent to which someone has used them. Estimations may not be exact but can be useful in determining additional punitive damages and charges.

Should You Seek a Plea Deal for a Theft Charge?

Especially if you do not have a prior theft conviction on your record, you may feel tempted to seek out a plea deal. In some circumstances, the court system will offer one to you, and you may be tempted to accept the first deal they provide. However, the initial offer may not be ideal, and there are cases where an attorney can negotiate and improve the deal on your behalf.

With a plea deal, even if you are found guilty, you can face significantly reduced consequences. In some cases, the charges themselves will be reduced in severity, which can help ensure your record doesn’t stand in the way of future opportunities.

Plea deals are excellent for reducing the severity of consequences and penalties you might face after receiving charges, but we strongly recommend you work with a qualified attorney for support before accepting any offers. An attorney from The Wiseman Law Firm can support you in many ways throughout your claim, including helping you effectively navigate through the process. Don’t hesitate to contact us for additional information.

What Should You Do After Theft Allegations?

Following charges or allegations for theft, you may feel concerned about what steps you should take. Moving forward carefully and strategically can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case. We suggest you consider our recommendations.

Avoid Discussing Allegations

If you have been charged with a crime of any kind, including theft, we recommend you avoid discussing your circumstances with others. Even discussing your case with friends or family could be detrimental to your case, as anything you share with others may be used against you. We also suggest you avoid talking to the police or other authorities about your case without support from a lawyer.

We only recommend you discuss your circumstances with a qualified criminal defense attorney who can aid with your theft charges. Within the client-lawyer relationship, there is a far higher degree of privacy and confidentiality than in any other avenue.

Stay Offline 

While the internet is useful in many ways, we recommend you stay offline as much as possible. Especially regarding social media, we suggest you log out of and deactivate any accounts. Anything you post, including text, photos, and pictures, could all be used against you. Even if your posts feel unrelated to your case or you have privacy settings turned on, other parties do not have your best interest in mind.

Avoid Contact With Those Pressing Allegations

If you have been charged with theft against a particular entity, we suggest you avoid contact with them as much as possible. This may mean finding another place to do your typical shopping, getting assistance from friends, or changing plans. While this may result in some abrupt changes in your life, it is far better to avoid unnecessary risks associated with any contact.

Getting into contact with the party filing charges against you may result in additional evidence and charges against you. Additional risks are not necessary, so we recommend you take every effort possible to avoid the entity or individuals who are also involved in this legal matter. For more information about your options, please retain assistance from The Williams Law Firm.

Preserve Any Evidence

If you have access to any evidence relating to your case, we recommend you hold onto it and get it organized. For example, hold onto any forms of communication, documents, receipts, videos or photographs, or other pieces of information. These can be useful for demonstrating alibis, innocence, accuracy in severity, and other parts of your case.

Do not tamper with your evidence in any way, but instead bring it to your criminal defense attorney. Information of any kind can help your lawyer feel prepared for any surprises other parties might have up their sleeves. These can also help your lawyer form strong and robust arguments and defenses in your favor.

Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney

As soon as possible, we strongly recommend you contact a qualified criminal defense attorney for support with your case. An attorney from The Wiseman Law Firm can support you in many ways throughout the legal process, including by recommending additional next steps and strategies you can utilize. These recommendations will be based on your specific needs and circumstances.

How Can an Orlando Theft Lawyer Help You?

If you have been charged with a crime of any kind, we strongly recommend you work with a criminal defense attorney for support. Retaining legal help from professionals is an excellent way to reduce stress related to your case and improve your odds of positive results and changes. The Wiseman Law Firm can support you in numerous ways, including but not limited to the following:

  • Interview witnesses
  • Help formulate a plea
  • Investigate the prosecutor’s case
  • Evaluate potential sentences
  • Gather evidence
  • Review search and seizure procedures
  • Prepare your case for court
  • Assure that all documents are filed correctly and in a timely manner
  • Communicate with the other parties on your behalf
  • Access research methods and tools only available to legal professionals
  • An understanding of the legal system and how to make it work for you

We strongly recommend you don’t represent yourself during your case, as this can quickly reduce your chances of positive legal results. Instead, work with a lawyer from The Wiseman Law Firm to reduce consequences and penalties, shorten litigation time, and decrease stressors related to legal matters.

Please contact us as soon as possible to improve your odds of legal success. By contacting us sooner, we will be more likely to have sufficient time and resources to dedicate to your case. We will have more time to find evidence, understand your needs, build a strong case in your favor, and much more the sooner you call.

Get a Former Prosecutor on Your Side – Call (407) 420-4647 for Invaluable Support From The Wiseman Law Firm

Fighting theft charges require an attorney with experience, dedication, and in-depth knowledge of criminal law. The Wiseman Law Firm theft lawyer is a former prosecutor who has an insider’s perspective into how theft cases are prosecuted. Former prosecutors will generally have better insight regarding what to expect from other parties, including how to shift favor in your direction. We know how to navigate the courts, how to strategically prepare a case, and how to investigate the details of a charge. 

Have our Orlando, FL theft attorney put his insight and experience to work for you. Led by Attorney Simon Wiseman, our dedicated firm can support you during your time of need. Facing charges for theft? Complete our contact form or give us a call (407) 420-4647 to schedule your initial case evaluation.

Why The Wiseman Firm Is Different

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Our law firm comes strongly recommended by past clients and by peers in the legal community. We are known for thorough preparation.

Trial-Tested Experience

A former prosecutor, Attorney Wiseman brings over two decades' experience to each case, successfully advocating for his clients' rights.

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