Pennsylvania Theft from a Motor Vehicle Lawyers
PA Theft from a Motor Vehicle Lawyers
Thank you for visiting Lampman Law. If you or someone you love is charged with theft from a motor vehicle in Pennsylvania, we can help. We are experienced criminal defense lawyers that are in district and trial courts daily representing people charged with crimes throughout Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania. Since Lampman Law opened we have zealously defended people facing theft accusations and have helped our clients avoid the criminal consequences and social stigma of a theft conviction.
If you would like us to examine your case, please call Lampman Law at 570-371-3737 to personally discuss the matter with us. We offer a free phone or in-office consultation. All consultations are also welcoming, free of pressure, and confidential.
18 Pa.C.S. § 3934. Theft from a motor vehicle
A person commits the offense of theft from a motor vehicle if he unlawfully takes or attempts to take possession of, carries away or exercises unlawful control over any movable property of another from a motor vehicle with the intent to deprive him thereof.
Theft from a motor vehicle was meant to criminalize the taking of moveable property other than the car itself. Commonwealth v. Foster, 33 A.3d 632 (Pa. Super. 2011). In Foster, the Superior Court held that the defendant’s removal of the vehicle’s grill was not theft “from” a vehicle, within the meaning of this statute because the grill was affixed to and was integral part of motor vehicle.
Grading & Penalties for PA Theft From a Motor Vehicle
Misdemeanor of the third degree (M3)
Theft from a motor vehicle is graded as a (M3) when the offense is a first or second offense and the value of the merchandise is less than $50.
A misdemeanor of the third degree is punishable by a maximum of 1-year imprisonment and a $2,000 fine. The OGS for these cases is 1.
Misdemeanor of the second degree (M2)
Theft from a motor vehicle is graded as a (M2) when the offense is a first or second offense and the value of the merchandise is $50 or more but less than $200.
A misdemeanor of the second degree is punishable by a maximum of 2 years imprisonment and a $5,000 fine. The OGS for these cases is 2.
Misdemeanor of the first degree (M1)
Theft from a motor vehicle is graded as a (M1) when the offense is a first or second offense and the value of the merchandise is more than $200.
A misdemeanor of the first degree is punishable by a maximum of 5 years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine. The OGS for these cases is 3.
Felony of the third degree (F3)
Theft from a motor vehicle is graded as a (F3) with an OGS of 6 when the offense is a third or subsequent offense within a five-year period, regardless of the value involved and regardless of the grading of the prior offenses.
Lampman Law Defends Theft From Motor Vehicle Cases
It is extremely important to timely hire an experienced Pennsylvania criminal defense when facing theft from a motor vehicle charges. As explained, these theft cases are complex and the accused’s freedom and other important rights are at risk. Hiring the right criminal defense lawyer, as soon as possible, can help the accused build their case by gathering the evidence to build a robust defense. It is the best chance for an accused to preserve their liberty, legal rights, and their reputation.
When choosing a lawyer, it is important to seek the services of a lawyer that primarily practices criminal defense and that the lawyer has personally handled theft cases in the county where the charge is being prosecuted. Likewise, it is vital that the lawyer can and will conduct a full investigation into the facts and circumstances of the allegation. Obviously, challenges to the valuation of the items or funds allegedly stolen are extremely important in defending theft prosecutions.
Please contact us at 570-371-3737 if you have any questions. Should you choose to trust us with your case, our fees are reasonable, we always use detailed written fee agreements, and payment plans (including credit card payment) can be arranged.