Shoplifting is an offense that all states take very seriously — some more than others. In Alabama, a conviction can result in serious legal consequences, including jail time and hefty fines, not to mention the resulting criminal record.
The potential sentence will depend on the degree of the offense, which is tied to the value of the stolen property. Here is what you need to know about the various degrees of felony theft in Alabama.
The differences between misdemeanor and felony theft
Under Alabama law, theft of property not exceeding $500 is a class A misdemeanor theft. If the stolen property’s value exceeds that, it is a felony offense of varying degrees
The particulars of the offense also matter. For instance, theft of a motor vehicle, firearm, controlled substances, livestock or a credit card is a felony offense.
The potential sentences of felony theft
The sentences for these classes of felony theft vary significantly. A Class D felony carries a prison sentence of between one and five years, yet a Class B felony could result in a maximum of 20 years behind bars. Previous convictions may enhance these sentences. In Class D felony cases, the Split Sentence Act applies. If you are facing incarceration, under normal circumstances, the law requires the sentence to be split (if incarceration is required), with a defendant serving a maximum of twenty-four months.
Are you facing theft charges in Alabama?
Be it a misdemeanor or a felony, a conviction can have far-reaching consequences on your life, and it is best to take proactive measures in light of that.
If you are facing theft charges in Alabama, strongly consider seeking legal representation as soon as possible to help protect your rights and interests. An experienced attorney can help mitigate your situation so that you do not experience long-term consequences for an alleged act that took place in a split second.