Theft charges vary significantly in severity here in North Carolina. Take, for instance, one of the most basic types of theft charges in the state: larceny. Under state law, some larceny charges come in at the misdemeanor level, while others are felony charges.
Which level a larceny charge comes in at can have many impacts for a person, as it can affect what penalties could be on the table and what the overall stakes are in his or her case. Many factors can influence whether a person accused of larceny would be facing misdemeanor or felony charges. Below are four key questions when it comes to this issue.
How much was allegedly stolen?
Under, North Carolina law, thefts of more than $1,000 are felonies.
Meanwhile, thefts $1,000 or less are typically misdemeanors. However, there are some exceptions to this, which is why the below questions can come into play.
What was allegedly stolen?
North Carolina larceny laws make it so the stealing of certain types of property is always a felony, regardless of the value of the property. Types of property this is the case for include: records under North Carolina State Archives custody, firearms, explosive devices or substances and incendiary devices or substances.
What were the circumstances of the alleged theft?
Certain theft circumstances also move a larceny offense up to the felony level, regardless of the value of what was stolen. One is if the theft was directly from an individual’s person. Another is if the theft was made in connection to certain other criminal violations.
What is the suspect’s past record?
State law makes it so, typically, if a person with four or more prior larceny offenses on their record commits another larceny offense, it is a felony offense.