Cleveland Property Crimes Lawyer

When a crime is done involving one’s property, whether residential or commercial, it is referred to as a property crime. In the state of Ohio, property crime comes with severe punishment, with some penalties entailing years of jail time following conviction. Other potential repercussions include an impact on professional licenses, job opportunities, the right to own a firearm, and more.

If you have been charged with a property crime, the team at Patituce & Associates, LLC is here to protect your interests. Our experienced team of criminal defense lawyers will assess your case and provide top-tier representation. We know every strategy the prosecutors and law enforcement may use in order to put you in jail and how to counteract them.

Call our Cleveland property crimes lawyers today at 440-471-7784 to protect your rights.

Table of Contents

What Is Property Crime?

A property crime primarily involves criminal trespasses and burglaries. However, there are several other types of offenses classified under property crimes in the state of Ohio. The aforementioned serious types of property crimes can lead to severe repercussions like hefty fines and even long-term imprisonment.

The law considers something a property crime when there has been a destruction, loss, or reduction in the value of a property. The crime doesn’t directly affect a person, but the property. However, it is also possible for an individual to sustain injuries as a result of the crime.

What Are the Common Types of Property Crimes?

Property crime is not uncommon in the country. According to the FBI, about 2,000 property crimes per 100,000 of the entire population. This figure is partly because there are many types of offenses falling under the property crime umbrella. They range from low-level offenses to severe felonies.

That said, here are the most common types of property crimes.

Robbery

Robbery is when an individual uses violence or threat of the same to take money or property from another person. Robberies occur at various locations including banks, retail stores, and more. An example is a robber pointing a gun at a bank teller or cashier demanding money.

Shoplifting

Shoplifting is when a person steals or conceals merchandise from a store. This often occurs when an individual hides merchandise in the pocket or bag and then walks out. This can be in any retail establishment such as grocery stores, clothing stores, department stores, etc.

Vandalism

Vandalism occurs when a party destroys or defaces property without permission. Breaking windows, graffiti, slashing tires, and throwing eggs are a few examples of vandalism. Other words for vandalism include malicious trespass, criminal mischief, and criminal damage.

Arson

Arson is one of the most serious forms of property crime. Arson happens when a person burns any structure or land. Charges can be more severe if the intention of the act was to injure someone or defraud investors.

Burglary

Burglary happens when one enters property unlawfully, either through force or coercion, and steals property.

Some types of property crimes require damage to a premise, while others need a victim. Due to the vast array of these crimes, it is imperative to understand each one of them. Most have degrees depending on specific factors like the value of things stolen or if a firearm was used.

A burglar breaking into a home concept of Cleveland property crime lawyer

What Are the Penalties for Theft Crimes in Ohio?

In the state of Ohio, penalties for theft depend on the kind of crime done. They also depend on the individual’s criminal history and the total value of damaged items. They can be more severe if the offense resulted in injury or death.

You can be charged with a Class C Misdemeanor if the property value was low. In Ohio, Class C misdemeanors are classified as petty offenses and attract a maximum fine of $500.

However, Class B misdemeanors attract bigger penalties, including a fine of $2,000 maximum and a jail term of up to 6 months. When it comes to Class A misdemeanors, you may be looking at a fine of not more than $4,000 and up to 1 year in jail.

Typically, misdemeanors are classified as minor offenses. Serious property crimes fall into the felony category. These can be first-degree, second-degree, third-degree, or state-jail felonies. When convicted of a state jail felony, you may be looking at a fine of $10,000 maximum, ad between 2 to 6 years in state jail.

For a third-degree felony, you may be looking at the same fine as a state jail felony and prison time between 2 and 10 years. As for a second-degree felony, you may be looking at a $10,000 fine and up to 20 years in prison. As for first-degree felony, you may be looking at a life sentence.

What Are Common Defenses for Property Crimes in Cleveland?

Depending on the nature of your case, some property crime defenses may be available. Some of the most common include:

Mistake

For most property crimes, there needs to be criminal intent for you to be found guilty. For instance, you may have taken something by mistake as you thought it was yours. This can be a solid defense.

Coercion

In some situations, you may have been forced to steal or damage property due to the threat of death, injury, or harm.

Necessity

In some cases, you can argue that the property destruction was necessary because of an emergency. For instance, you may have needed to break a window in order to escape a fire or similar danger.

It is important to note that property crimes can be complex and it’s best to use a criminal defense lawyer.

How Our Cleveland Property Crimes Lawyers Can Help You

Hefty fines, jail time, and felony convictions have severe repercussions. If you have been charged with a substantial crime, it goes without saying that you will need a top-of-the-line criminal defense lawyer to represent you. Regardless of your knowledge or experience with the law, representing yourself in a property crime case is never a good idea.

Our criminal defense lawyers are seasoned to find and unearth aspects of cases that are unique. We look for factors and make arguments that can reduce a criminal charge. Our role is to organize and present facts in a form that puts you in the best winning position.

In addition, there are many legal concepts that come up during trials that the average person does not know when a certain fact may have a vital impact on their case. For these and many other reasons, it is paramount to know how a criminal defense lawyer can help.

Here are some of the reasons you should get in touch with us for a property crime case.

A Cleveland property crimes lawyer with a miniature home

Criminal Law System Knowledge

This one is a no-brainer. Cleveland property crimes lawyers have a Juris Doctorate and extensive knowledge of the criminal justice system. Our attorneys have studied and trained to comprehend every aspect of criminal law as well as court procedures.

It’s our job to defend our clients and determine whether there are inconsistencies or loopholes in the case that can work in your favor. We are here to help you build a strong case that benefits you.

In addition to the extensive Ohio criminal justice system, there are numerous local ‘’unwritten rules’’. For instance, if a prosecutor is able to make and approve plea bargains, our team may save you both time and money just by talking to the right party from the onset.

Also, there are many other laws and rules buried within regulations. If you represent yourself, chances are you do not know whether the search done by the authorities was lawful or not without comprehension of the 4th Amendment nuances.

Great Negotiation Skills

In some cases, taking a plea can reduce or eliminate charges on your case. However, some prosecutors take advantage of this aspect, especially when defendants represent themselves. When a prosecutor goes to trial with a novice, they know they will have an easier time compared to fighting with a seasoned criminal defense lawyer.

Experienced criminal defense lawyers have years of negotiating cases and usually implement creative ideas to sentences that the average individual may not even know exists. Our criminal defense attorneys will advise you from the onset and the steps to take in order to put you in the best position possible for a plea bargain.

Some people are confident that they are not guilty, and do not wish to engage in plea bargains. However, they do not know that there are various legal strategies whereby the charge can be resolved without the need to plead guilty and still reduce the risk of a potential conviction during the trial. When you represent yourself, these are aspects that you may not be aware of.

Access to Vital Resources

Most property crime cases involve witness testimonies whereby statements and evidence need to be garnered. But rarely will you come across a witness that will provide information or statements directly to the individual involved in the crime. More often than not, they are willing to talk to the investigator or the lawyer regarding the upcoming testimony, thus making it easier to build a solid case.

In addition, seasoned criminal defense lawyers have experience in finding professionals that can investigate your case as well as witnesses bound to be called to the stand at trial. If they find information that would make the witnesses’ information less credible, this would make your case stronger. Also, they can hire or find expert witnesses to show your innocence or combat the prosecutors’ forensic evidence.

Psychological Support

While psychology is not the formal training of criminal defense lawyers by virtue of their positions, we provide emotional support to our clients. Criminal cases bring about a roller coaster of emotions as the defendants have to deal with low self-esteem, embarrassment, and even depression.

A Cleveland property crimes lawyer stays objective providing insights and perspective on the proceedings. Such reality checks are vital, particularly when a defendant is on the fence about whether to accept a plea bargain.

Self-representation is never advised when dealing with a property crime. A lawyer knows the ins and outs of such cases and their presence can make the difference between losing and winning a case. With a seasoned criminal defense lawyer, you increase your chances of either getting a favorable plea bargain or winning the case.

Hire a Seasoned Cleveland Property Crimes Lawyer Today!

Property crimes can be complex and can have a major impact on your life depending on the degree. A criminal defense lawyer is vital when it comes to such cases. Call us today at 440-471-7784 for the best representation from Patituce & Associates in Cleveland, Ohio!

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