Petty Theft Vs. Grand Theft in Tennessee

Theft Law

What is the Difference Between Petty Theft and Grand Theft?

Man stealing a wallet out of woman’s purse - Tennessee theft laws

Theft crimes are categorized between petty theft and grand (felony) theft and the penalties vary by category.

Petty Theft vs Grand Theft

  • Grand theft is a more serious offense and involves property with a higher value
  • Petty theft, on the other hand, is less serious and involves property with a lesser monetary value

Petty theft in Tennessee is discussed in Tennessee Code Annotated section 39-14-105 and is considered theft of property or services that are valued at $500 or less.

Theft, in this case, is the general definition of taking an item without consent from the owner and having the intent of depriving the owner of the property. Petty theft is generally charged as a Class A misdemeanor in Tennessee, which is punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.

Facing charges? Contact The Claiborne Ferguson Law Firm, P.A. for your free consultation.

When is a Theft a Felony?

If the theft offense involved property with a value above $500, it is usually charged as a felony. These crimes are often classified as grand theft and hold serious penalties. Depending on the exact class of felony, the consequences can vary:

  • A Class E felony can follow theft of property between $500 and $1,000 and is punishable by between one and six years in prison and a fine of up to $3,000
  • A Class D felony can be charged for a theft offense involving property valued between $1,000 and $10,000. This level of offense is punishable by between two and 12 years in prison along with a fine of up to $5,000
  • If the property is valued between $10,000 and $60,000, the offense can be charged as a Class C felony. This felony is punishable by between three and 35 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000
  • Lastly, if the property has a value above $60,000, the offense could be charged as a Class B felony punishable by between eight and 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $25,000

Fight against your petty theft or grand theft charges with the help of a Memphis criminal lawyer from The Claiborne Ferguson Law Firm, P.A. Contact us now to schedule a free case evaluation!

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