Grand Larceny SC: Punishment, Charges, Fines, Jail Time
Did you know that SC laws on larceny depend on the value of the stolen goods? The more valuable the stolen goods, the more penalties you will be facing.
But who determines the value of the stolen goods?
And what are the penalties for Grand Larceny?
If you are facing a grand larceny charge in South Carolina you should know what lies ahead. Keep reading to find out what you need know so you can start fighting for your future.
Grand Larceny: The Basics
Larceny is stealing. Legally, larceny is the taking and carrying away the property of another with the intent to deprive the owner of the property. The person accused of the crime takes somebody else’s stuff and has no intention of ever returning it. The accused does not have permission to take the stuff.
If the accused does not use force to take the item (such as using a gun, something like a gun, etc.) then the crime is most likely some form of larceny or a crime of dishonesty. If force is used the crime is not larceny; it would be robbery or some form of robbery, such as Armed Robbery.
Importance of Item(s) Stolen
The items stolen in a larceny are personal property. Larceny does not involve real property such as real estate, houses, or land. Personal property are things that are movable assets.
The value of the items is an important factor in determining whether the case will be a “Petty Larceny” or a “Grand Larceny.” A petty larceny means the value of the stolen goods is $2,000 or less. Petty Larceny is in Magistrate or Municipal Court.
A Grand Larceny means that the value of the items is greater than $2,000. The greater the value of the item, the more serious the consequences.
The Penalties for Grand Larceny:
The statute provides for a fine in the discretion of the Judge. The Judge may not order a fine, but may instead order jail time or probation.
Restitution may also be ordered. Restitution is money that the accused owes the owner for the stolen items.
Value of Item(s) Stolen
0-5 years in prison
$10,000 or more
0-10 years in prison
Factors Affecting Sentencing
The sentence imposed can depend on the Defendant’s prior record, particularly how many times the Defendant has been convicted of stealing items.
The victim has a right to be notified of all proceedings and the Judge will hear from the victim or victims if they wish to talk to the Judge. If the victims do not come to court, their concerns (including but not limited to Restitution or the sentimental value of the items taken) may be voiced through the Solicitor or Victim’s’ Advocate.
Common Questions About Grand Larceny Charges
Grand larceny is larceny (see above) that involves goods valued $2,000 or more.
- Is grand larceny a felony?
- What is the punishment for grand larceny?
The sentence imposed for a grand larceny conviction could include jail time and/or a fine in the discretion of the judge. If jail time is imposed, you could be facing up to 10 years in prison depending upon the value of the stolen goods.
Restitution may also be ordered if money is due to the victim to be paid back for the stolen items.
- Who determines the value of the goods?
Since the value of the goods determines the penalty the Defendant is facing, the value of the goods is important. There are many factors in determining “valuation.” In a criminal case, a victim is not allowed to get a “windfall” or “make money” because items were stolen. This is not the same in a civil case.
A Defendant can request a Restitution Hearing to challenge the value of the stolen items. The State can put up witnesses and offer testimony about the value of the items. A restitution hearing can be held before or after the Defendant enters a plea of guilty. Sometimes a judge will have the hearing after the plea and give the State some time to have the hearing. For example, the restitution hearing will be scheduled within 90 days of the date of the plea. If the State does not follow the Order, the restitution may be waived and no money will be due to the victims.
The value of the items to the victim may be taken into consideration. For example, a very old gold ring may be worth only $50, but to the victim it may be a sentimental item that belonged to their Grandmother that cannot be replaced. The judge will take this type of information into consideration.
Some stolen items may be covered by the victim’s insurance. If the insurance payments made the victim “whole” again, the victim cannot then ask for Restitution from the Defendant. The Defendant should not be compensating the victim for pain and suffering and lost wages in a criminal case. That type of settlement should be handled in Civil Court.
- Is it possible to get probation for Grand Larceny?
Yes, it is possible, but not a definite outcome. Grand Larceny is a felony so if you are convicted of Grand Larceny, you will be a convicted felon and give up certain rights.
There is no mandatory minimum jail sentence, though. The judge may consider input from the Solicitor, victim(s), individual facts of the case, and your prior criminal record to determine a sentence.
- Do I need an attorney to fight grand larceny charges?
Yes! Felonies can affect your life forever in many ways, including the loss of your current job, the loss of future job prospects, and damage to your family unit. You need to put your best foot forward now, when it really counts. For more on this you can go here.
Ready to take the next step?
Facing grand larceny charges is serious, and it is definitely not something that you want to tackle alone. If you are ready to start protecting your future the first step is to discuss your case with an attorney who can help prepare your defense.
Are you ready to talk to a lawyer? Set up a free consultation so our team can examine the facts of your case. You don’t have to fight this battle alone.
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