Getting into trouble with the law at some point in our lives happens to many of us. Everyone makes a mistake at one point or another, but the important thing is that we learn from these mistakes. If you have recently been accused of theft in Tennessee, it may be because you felt pressured into doing so by friends, or because you were at a low place in your life. If you realize that what you did was wrong or think that you can defend yourself by explaining the situation in full, you should be able to show that you are regretful and have no intention of getting into trouble with the law again.
Luckily, first-time offenders are often treated more leniently than those who have committed repeat offenses. By understanding exactly how the law in Tennessee will apply to you, you will be in a better position to defend yourself.
What is the definition of the crime of theft of property in Tennessee?
A person will be found guilty of theft of property in Tennessee if it can be proven that they intended to deprive the owner of their property. It should also be shown that the accused knowingly obtained and exercised control over the property without gaining consent. Therefore, mistakenly taking property can be a successful defense.
What are the consequences of theft in Tennessee?
While there may be more lenient sentences for first-time offenders, the consequences of the crime of theft will most often depend on the value of the property stolen. If the value of the property was $500 or less, the accused will likely be charged with a Class A misdemeanor and up to 11 months in jail. If the value of the stolen property was between $500 and $1,000, the crime could lead to a Class E felony and up to six years in jail. A person who steals property to the value of up to $250,000 could face up to 30 years in jail.
If you are concerned about an accusation of theft made against you, you should take swift action to understand the law and adequately defend yourself.