Theft Defense Lawyer in Austin

We Can Protect Your Rights & Your Freedom

If you are accused of criminal theft, the government has the burden of proving you guilty as charged. Austin theft defense lawyer Jason Trumpler can help you avoid a theft conviction and related consequences.

At the Law Offices of Jason Trumpler, we focus on Texas criminal defense law exclusively and our record of results is a testament to our performance in the courtroom.

Please contact our office online or call (512) 359-3300 to schedule a consultation.

What Constitutes Theft?

The Texas penal code defines theft as unlawful appropriation with intent to deprive the owner of property.

“Depriving” is withholding property from the rightful owner in specific ways:

  • The deprivation must be permanent or for such an extended period that the rightful owner loses a large portion of value and enjoyment from the property
  • Deprivation may include refusal to return property unless in exchange for payment of a reward or other compensation
  • If property is disposed of in a manner that makes it unlikely the owner will recover it, the owner is considered deprived of the property

Theft Charges

Depending on the value of the property in question and other factors, theft can be a misdemeanor or felony charge. If the accused has a prior conviction, the classification may be changed and the consequences increased.

There are three classifications of misdemeanor theft:

  • Class C: Involves theft of property worth less than $50; potential penalties include a $500 fine
  • Class B: Involves theft of property worth $50 - $499, or the property is a driver’s license/I.D. card; potential penalties include a $2,000 fine and 180 days in jail
  • Class A: Involves theft of property worth $500 - $1,499; potential penalties include a $4,000 fine and up to 1 year in jail

For property values of $1,500 but less than $20,000 (or for specific property types, such as a firearm) the charge is state jail felony theft. The potential punishment is severe, including incarceration for up to two years and a fine of up to $10,000.

There are three categories of felony theft in Texas:

  • Third Degree: Stolen property is worth $20,000 - $99,999; potential penalties include 2 - 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine
  • Second Degree: Stolen property is worth $100,000 - $199,999; potential penalties include a 2 - 20 year sentence and a $10,000 fine
  • First Degree: Stolen property is worth $200,000 or more; potential penalties include 5 - 99 years in prison and a $10,000 fine

Civil Penalties

The Texas Theft Liability Act adds potential civil court penalties onto criminal theft charges. An adult (or parent of a minor) can be held liable for a victim’s monetary losses. If a plaintiff sues and wins, he or she is entitled to collect actual damages for the value of stolen property in addition to a penalty award and recovery of legal fees and costs. This applies both ways, however: The defendant’s legal fees and costs are covered by the plaintiff if the suit proves unsuccessful.

If you are accused of theft, there are many reasons to defend yourself. The help of an experienced criminal defense lawyer in Austin can prove invaluable.

Stand with the Law Offices of Jason Trumpler

You can count on Jason Trumpler and his associates to explore every possible defense on your behalf and to hold the state accountable for questionable accusations and evidence. Our office will promptly request all exculpatory evidence or material that is favorable to you. Upon request by your defense lawyer, the prosecutor has a legal duty to seek out, review, and provide this material. If you have been charged with any type of theft, we can help.

Are you facing theft charges or an accusation of another property crime? Please contact us online or call (512) 359-3300 today to schedule an appointment.

  • 17+ Years of Experience

    Attorney Jason Trumpler has handled thousands of criminal cases and more than 100 jury trials.

  • Available 24/7

    We answer the phones 24 hours a day. Day or night, when you need help, we are just a phone call away.

  • Open Communication

    Our goal is to make our clients feel like family and keep them informed every step of the way.