Under Texas law, if someone unlawfully takes something with the intent of depriving the owner of that property, he or she commits theft. Additionally, if the stolen property belongs to the owner and the thief takes it without consent or if someone steals or accepts already stolen property, it is also illegal.

Knowing the penalties for theft in Texas will help individuals understand what they face with their theft charges.

Criminal penalties

The value of the service or property stolen dictates the level of theft offense in Texas. Weapons and livestock have different penalties.

For services or property valued between $1,500 and $19,999 the accused faces 180 days to two years in state jail and up to a $10,000 fine.

If the stolen property ranges in value from $20,000 and $99,999 or it is livestock worth under $100,000, it is a third-degree felony theft, punishable by a fine of up to $10,000 and 2-10 years of imprisonment.

Second-degree felony theft covers stolen property worth between $100,000 and $199,999, punishable by 2-20 years of imprisonment and a maximum fine of $10,000.

The theft is a first-degree felony theft if the stolen property is worth $200,000 or more. In addition to hefty fines, this felony is punishable by 5-99 years of imprisonment.

Civil liability

If the plaintiff chooses to file a civil lawsuit against the defendant, he or she also faces civil penalties. If the person cannot return the stolen property, then Texas law mandates the defendant reimburse the plaintiff for the value of the property and pay a $1,000 civil penalty.

Before their court dates, those facing felony theft charges should familiarize themselves with the state-mandated penalties.