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What you Need to Know about Petit Larceny

  • December 4, 2013

Petit larceny is a crime that involves stealing a small amount of money or item of low value. In order for a crime to be to be considered as a petit larceny it must involve the removal of an item from its owner intentionally. The monetary standard of the stolen items or money that qualifies for this crime depends from one jurisdiction to the other or from one country to the other. For instance, there are some jurisdictions in which just removing a bulb from someone property can be considered as petit larceny while in other jurisdiction it might be considered as vandalism.

It is good to note that an individual who commits this crime takes the other person money or item and moves with it away. Therefore, those people who borrow items and fail to return or those who take the item and then returns it back cannot be considered as committed petit larceny. Removing or taking another person’s property because of some confusion or misunderstanding is also not considered as petty larceny, for example, taking another person item that is similar to yours out of confusion.

Petty larceny charges vary from one country to the other and often carry lighter penalties for the convicts compared to other forms of theft. The punishment differs depending on the area it happened. Since the item stolen is of low value or the amount of money stolen is low, some jurisdiction punishes the convicts with less than one month imprisonment. Most of the first time criminals get probation and only sent to jail after repeatedly committing the same crime. However, it is worth noting that lighter punishment or sentencing does not means that the crime is taken lightly compared to others. In many areas petit larceny convictions leads to creation of criminal records that can affect the ability a person has to get a certain job.