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What Are the Penalties for Theft in Texas?

Have you been accused of stealing something? You already know that Texas’ laws are notorious for being harsh, so how does the state penalize theft-related crimes? Here, we’re providing a brief overview of Texas’ theft laws and penalties as covered under:

Title 7. Offenses Against Property, Chapter 31. Theft

Under Sec. 31.03, a person commits “theft” if he or she unlawfully appropriates (steals) property with the intention of permanently depriving the owner of the property. Appropriation of someone else’s property is unlawful if:

  • It’s taken without the owner’s consent.
  • A person receives stolen property knowing that it was stolen.

A theft offense can be prosecuted as a misdemeanor or a felony depending upon the value of the stolen property. Here are some examples:

  • Value of stolen property less than $50 – Class C misdemeanor
  • Value of stolen property $50 or more, but less than $500 – Class B misdemeanor
  • Value of stolen property $500 or more, but less than $1,500 – Class A misdemeanor
  • Value of stolen property $1,500 or more, but less than $20,000 – state jail felony
  • $20,000 or more, but less than $100,000 – felony of the third degree
  • $100,000 or more, but less than $200,000 – felony of the second degree
  • $200,000 or more – a felony of the first degree

Penalties for Misdemeanors

A Class C misdemeanor is punishable by a fine not to exceed $500.

A Class B misdemeanor is punishable by a fine not to exceed $2,000, or up to 180 days in jail, or by a fine and confinement.

A Class A misdemeanor is punishable by a fine not to exceed $4,000, or up to one year in jail, or by a fine and confinement.

Penalties for a Felony

A third degree felony is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine not to exceed $10,000.

A second degree felony is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a fine not to exceed $10,000.

A first degree felony is punishable by up to 99 years in prison and a fine not to exceed $10,000.

Click here to learn more about Texas’ crimes and punishment.

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