Earlier this year, a woman from Coral Springs went on a bad date. When she met with Anthony Maldonado at a local Applebee’s last March, he borrowed her iPhone and used it to coordinate the theft from her home of property valued at more than $5,000. At the end of the date, Maldonado ended up stealing her phone as well – and left her with the check.
Maldonado was charged with residential burglary and grand theft – crimes that carry hefty penalties in the State of Florida.
Under Florida Statute 812.04, a person commits theft if they temporarily or permanently deprive a person of the use of their property and/or use or attempt to use property without the owner’s consent. Theft encompasses a number of offenses including, but not limited to, the following:
- Burglary, including attempted and aggravated burglary
- Robbery, including attempted and armed robbery
- Possession and distribution of stolen property
- Counterfeiting and forgery
- Credit card and identity theft
- White collar crimes
Theft is classified in accordance with the value of the property stolen:
- Less than $300 = Petty, or Petit (from the French, meaning small) Theft (a misdemeanor)
- $300 or more = Grand Theft (third-degree felony)
- $20,000 or more = Grand Theft (second-degree felony)
- $100,000 or more = Grand Theft (first-degree felony)
Punishment ranges from court-ordered treatment and fines, to hefty prison sentences. A theft charge will remain on your permanent record and can make it difficult to find future employment.
Also known as, breaking and entering burglary is defined by Florida Statute 810.02 as the willful and illegal entry of a home, business, building or motor vehicle with the intent to commit a crime, such as:
- Assault and battery
- Any crime of a sexual nature
If there is no intent to commit a crime inside the structure, it is considered trespassing. Penalties for burglary depend on the crime involved, and range from five years for misdemeanor offenses to life sentences for first-degree felony burglary. Either way, you will need the services of an experienced criminal defense lawyer.