Fight Your Theft / Theft by Deception Charge in Pennsylvania!

Charged with Theft in PA? Get an Aggressive Criminal Lawyer to Protect Your Rights and Freedom!

Most theft charges are at least misdemeanor-level charges,  and may be felonies if the amount involved is over $2000, or there are other circumstances involved.

Pennsylvania theft laws are complicated, and the punishments can be severe, many including jail time. Please call us for a criminal defense consultation and case evaluation, and we’ll explain what we can do to help fight the charges, and work for a dismissal, not guilty, or a reduction in the charges.

What is a Theft Charge?

Theft is defined under Pennsylvania criminal law as unlawfully taking or otherwise depriving another of moveable property; or unlawfully transferring or exercising control over immovable property with intent to benefit one’s self.

Different categories of theft include:

  • Theft by Deception
  • Theft by Extortion
  • Theft by Property Lost, Mislaid, or Delivered by Mistake
  • Theft by Receiving Stolen Property
  • Theft of Services
  • Theft by Failure to Make Required Disposition of Funds Received
  • Theft from a Motor Vehicle
  • Retail Theft / Shoplifting
  • Bad Checks

Theft Penalties under Pennsylvania Laws

The penalties for these different 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.

Bad Checks

A charge of writing bad checks in Pennsylvania is also penalized by the amount involved.

Bad Checks Classification
Over $75,000 Felony 3
$1000-75,000 Misdemeanor 1
$500-$1000 Misdemeanor 2
$200-$500 Misdemeanor 3

A third (3rd) offense bad checks charge is at least a Misdemeanor 1 crime, regardless of the amount involved.

Pennsylvania Theft Defense Strategies

There are often several defense avenues I may pursue simultaneously to fight a theft charge. One element that can be challenged is intent. It is possible that the theft was accidental or inadvertent, or that you didn’t know the property was stolen in a receiving stolen property case.

I’ll also look to negotiate charges down to a lesser offense, especially when a deal can be reached that involves restitution – paying the victim back. In any criminal case, an experienced defense lawyer such as myself will determine the best defense strategies after examining all the facts evidence against you in the case.

Please call me anytime or contact me via this form for a free legal consultation on how to defend a theft, theft by deception, receiving stolen property, or any other criminal charge. We work in courts anywhere in Pennsylvania. Call now at (888) 412-3298.


Defended theft charges in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

(888) 412-3298

My firm represents clients facing theft and other criminal charges across Eastern Pennsylvania, including Philadelphia, Harrisburg, Lebanon, Carlisle and Lancaster, and in Bucks, Montgomery, Northampton, and Lehigh Counties. Call today, no obligation!