What Are the Different Types of Theft?

The A&M TeamCriminal Defense

When it comes to theft, it is important to note that there are several different types that vary in severity and penalties. When many hear the word ‘theft’, they assume it is a pretty straightforward crime that comes with a specific punishment. However, theft can actually be quite complicated. By definition, theft is a criminal act in which property that belongs to another individual or business is taken without that person’s consent. In some cases, theft is used synonymously with larceny. Furthermore, a theft has occurred if one takes an action with the intention of depriving another the rightful use or ownership or his or her property or money. Depending on the severity of the crime, theft can be classified as either a felony or misdemeanor.

Theft is a broad term with many different crimes under its umbrella, including robbery, fraud, embezzlement, and identity theft. So, what’s really the difference between these different types of theft? For many, this question is one that is answered out of curiosity. However, if you or a loved one is facing criminal charges, the distinction between these different types of theft could have a huge impact. As Oklahoma robbery and theft attorneys, we are committed to ensuring our clients understand the charges brought against them. On the other hand, if you are a victim of one of the types of theft we will go over below, we can help.

Here is a look at the several of the most common types of theft as well as a brief description of what sets them apart from the rest:

  • Larceny

Also referred to as simple theft, larceny is a crime that occurs when someone unlawfully takes or uses property that belongs to another party. There are many different types of larceny, ranging from misdemeanor shoplifting to grand theft.

  • Identity Theft

With the prevalence of technology and influx of hackers, identity theft has become an increasingly common crime. This type of theft takes place when someone uses another person’s name, bank account, credit card, or other personal identifier without permission. Identify theft can leave a serious, long-lasting impact, such as destroying the victim’s credit score and finances altogether.

  • Robbery

Another common type of crime, robbery occurs when someone uses violence, intimidation, or threats to obtain property. In a nutshell, robbery is a theft with the added element of violence. Another aspect of the robbery category is armed robbery or mugging, which carries a far more serious penalty that petty theft or larceny.

  • Fraud

This type of theft occurs when someone deceives another party, coercing them into giving up their property willingly but under false pretenses. While violence is not typically associated with fraud, it is nonetheless serious and life-changing.

  • Carjacking

Carjacking takes place when a person uses violence to take the vehicle of another party. In some cases, actual force is used, while in others the reasonable fear of force is sufficient to prove this crime took place.

  • Grand Theft

This type of crime is typically associated with stealing another person’s vehicle, however, its classification describes a high dollar value in the taking. These types of cases can vary and may include a serious act of violence or a high-brow theft, such as embezzlement.

These are just a few of the most common types of theft that we see. If you or a loved one has been the victim of one of these crimes, or if you find yourself faced with a theft charge, contact Atkins & Markoff today.