Suffolk County Grand Larceny Punishment

Sentencing for criminal convictions in New York is based on several different factors. The most important factor is always the seriousness of the offense. Crimes are categorized as either misdemeanors or felonies. Misdemeanor offenses are relatively minor, with the penalty being a year or less in jail. Felonies are serious offenses. Grand larceny, which is the legal term for stealing, is classified as a felony. As a result, sentencing for a grand larceny conviction can be as much as 25 years in prison. In order for you to be convicted of grand larceny, not only must the prosecutor prove to the court that you took property from another person with the intent of depriving that person of the property, the prosecutor must also show that that dollar value of the property is so high that the theft rises to the level of grand larceny. If you have been charged with grand larceny you should immediately contact a Suffolk County Grand Larceny Punishment Lawyer who understands how courts determine grand larceny sentences and who will aggressively defend you to ensure that your case is resolved in the best possible manner given the facts of your case.

There are several different methods for accomplishing grand larceny. For example, you can steal by trickery, embezzlement, extortion, passing a bad check, lying, failing to try to return lost property, or trickery. N.Y. Pen. Law § 155.05. Furthermore, the type of property that can be at issue for a larceny charge includes personal property, real property, money, vehicles, guns, water, gas, electricity, steam, computer data, and computer programs. In People v. Sparbanie, 110 A.D.3d 1119 (2013), the defendant faced a grand larceny charge for stealing cable television services. Regardless of what you are accused of stealing, if you are convicted your punishment may include going to prison for many years.

Types of Grand Larceny

You will be charged with grand larceny if the value of the property you are accused of taking is greater than $1,000. With a few notable exceptions if the value is $1,000 or less, the charge will be petit larceny which is a misdemeanor. The exceptions are where the property is a credit card, debit card, firearm, a car or other vehicle with a value over $100, or a religious item with a value of $100 or greater. You will also be charged with grand larceny if you steal directly from someone's person.

There are 5 different types of grand larceny crimes: grand larceny in the fourth degree, grand larceny in the third degree, grand larceny in the second degree, grand larceny in the third degree and aggravated grand larceny of an automated teller machine. The sentence you will receive will be largely determined by the charge. If you are charged with grand larceny in the fourth degree, your sentence will be less harsh than if you are convicted of grand larceny in the second degree. When the judge decides on your sentence, your prior criminal history will be considered. If you have prior a felony conviction, this will negatively impact your sentencing. The judge will give you a harsher punishment then you would otherwise receive. You will also be subject to statutory rules that require you to be sentenced to a minimum prison term.

Grand Larceny in the Fourth Degree

Grand larceny in the fourth degree, a Class E felony, is the charge you will face if you are accused of stealing property that has a value that is greater than $1,000, but less than $3,000. N.Y. Pen. Law § 155.30. If you are convicted you could be sentenced to up to 4 years in prison. The sentence may also include probation and will likely include payment of restitution. For first time offenders New York law does not require a minimum prison sentence. You could be sentenced to just 5 years of probation and restitution. However, if you have a prior felony conviction the minimum sentence for grand larceny in the fourth degree is 1.5 years in prison.

Grand Larceny in the Third Degree

Grand larceny in the third degree is the charge you will face if you are accused of stealing property that is worth more than $3,000 but not greater than $50,000, or if the property is an automated teller machine (ATM) or an ATM's contents. N.Y. Pen. Law § 155.35. If convicted you may end up in prison for up to 7 years. If you are a first time offender you may not be sentenced to prison at all as there is no required minimum sentence. You may be sentenced to 5 years of probation and required to pay restitution. However, if you have a prior felony conviction, the minimum sentence for grand larceny in the third degree is 2 to 4 years in prison.

Grand Larceny in the Second Degree

For a charge of grand larceny in the second degree, the property stolen must be worth more than $50,000, or the theft must have involved extortion. N.Y. Pen. Law § 155.40. Grand larceny in the second degree is a Class C felony. The maximum sentence is up to 15 years in prison. N.Y. Pen. Law § 70.00. For first time offenders there is no minimum sentence, meaning that your sentence could be significantly less than 15 years. You could even be sentenced to probation. However, if you have a prior felony conviction, the minimum sentence for grand larceny in the second degree is 3 to 6 years in prison.

Aggravated Grand Larceny of an Automated Teller Machine (ATM)

Aggravated grand larceny of an automated teller machine is a Class C felony. This will be the charged you will face if you steal an ATM or the contents of an ATM. N.Y. Pen. Law § 155.43. Like grand larceny in the second degree, if you are convicted, you could be incarcerated for up to 15 years. For first time offenders there is no minimum sentence. However, if you have a prior felony conviction, the minimum sentence is 3 to 6 years in prison.

Grand Larceny in the First Degree

The most serious grand larceny offense is grand larceny in the first degree. It involves stealing property valued in excess of $1 million. It is a Class B felony. N.Y. Pen. Law § 155.42. If convicted you could be sentenced to up to 25 years in prison. Unlike the other grand larceny charges even if you are a first time offender if you are convicted of grand larceny in the first degree, there is a minimum sentence that the judge must impose of 1 to 3 years. If you have a prior felony conviction, the minimum sentence is 4.5 to 9 years in prison.

Probation

A grand larceny conviction may include a probation sentence of 5 years. Depending on the facts of your case as well as your background, your sentence may include just probation, or it may include both jail or prison time as well as probation. If you are sentenced to concurrent terms of prison and probation, and your prison term is for less than 5 years, once released you will have to serve the remainder of your probation term.

Beware that while probation is preferable to prison, there are a significant number of conditions that you must adhere to during probation. The conditions vary from person to person. Common conditions of probation include: not committing another crime, refraining from hanging out with other felons, refraining from hanging out at disreputable places, holding a job, supporting your family, submitting to warrantless searches, refraining from drinking excessive alcohol, and refraining from possessing or using controlled substances. You will be assigned to a probation officer to whom you must report regularly. You will not be allowed to leave the area without permission. If you fail to abide by the conditions attached to your probation your probation officer may violate you. If this happens you will have to appear before a judge. If the judge agrees with your probation officer that you have violated one or more conditions of your probation the judge may send you to jail. In People v. Lyman, 070314 NYAPP3 (July 3, 2014), the defendant Raymond Lyman plead guilty to grand larceny in the fourth degree. She was sentenced to time served and 5 years probation. Lyman was later found to have violated terms of his probation. As a consequence the court revoked Lyman's probation and sentenced him to 1 to 4 years in prison along with $500 restitution.

Plea Agreement

The prosecutor may offer you a deal where you agree to plead guilty. The agreement may involve pleading guilty to a lesser charge, or pleading guilty to the original charges in exchange for a relatively light sentence. However, plea agreements generally come with conditions. If you fail to comply with those conditions, you will have been found to have violated the terms of the plea agreement and you may end up with a harsher resolution to your case. For example, in People v. Wachtel, defendant Eugene Wachtel plead guilty to grand larceny in the third degree and was sentenced to 5 years probation. As a condition of the plea agreement, Wachtel was required to enter a drug treatment program. When he failed to do so the judge found that Wachtel had violated the terms of the plea agreement and sentenced him to 2⅓ to 7 years in prison.

While facing a grand larceny charge and the possibility of being sent to prison is frightening, the best way to ensure that you are properly defended is to be represented by an attorney who understands all facets of the New York criminal justice system. The staff at Stephen Bilkis & Associates, PLLC has years of experience successfully defending clients in New York criminal courts who have been charged with grand larceny, as well as other crimes such as criminal possession of stolen property, identity theft, robbery, and petit larceny. Contact us at 1.800.NY.NY.LAW (1.800.696.9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve those accused of grand larceny in the following locations:

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