Theft of services is a serious crime that can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the situation. If you are convicted of theft of services in Utah, you can be imprisoned, heavily fined, and placed on probation. Being convicted will also give you a criminal record, which can make it extremely difficult to get hired for jobs or take advantage of other important opportunities in life.
When you’re facing such serious consequences, you need to do everything you can to improve your odds of defeating the charges. You need to retain a skilled criminal defense lawyer who has extensive experience handling theft of services charges in Utah.
Contact Our Salt Lake County Theft of Services Lawyers for a Free Consultation
Salt Lake City theft of services attorney Darwin Overson has been handling misdemeanor and felony theft cases in Salt Lake County and locations throughout Utah for over 16 years. With thousands of cases under his belt, Darwin knows what strategies and tactics to employ in the fight to protect his clients’ best interests. Darwin will work tirelessly to uphold your liberties and defend your Constitutional rights while guiding you through the court system and fighting the charges against you.
Call the law offices of Overson Law right away at (801) 758-2287 to set up a free legal consultation with Darwin. He will keep your information private. Darwin represents defendants charged with theft of services in counties throughout Utah, including Summit County, Weber County, Wasatch County, Tooele County, Box Elder County, Cache County, Rich County, and Davis County.
Were You or a Family Member Charged with Stealing Services in Utah?
Theft, robbery, and burglary are often confused. However, they are separate charges. Robbery is charged when a person forcibly takes property away from another person, such as mugging someone on the street. Burglary is charged when a person unlawfully enters a property, such as a house or a closed business, with intent to commit a crime. When a person allegedly steals under circumstances that don’t amount to robbery or burglary, he or she will be charged with theft, which is sometimes called larceny.
There are many different types of theft under Utah’s criminal code, including theft by deception, theft by extortion, and retail theft (shoplifting). Theft of services has its own definition under Utah Code § 76-6-409. A person will be charged with theft of services, as opposed to other types of theft, when he or she allegedly:
- Receives a paid service without paying for it by using “deception, threat, force, or any other means designed to avoid the due payment” for the service.
- Diverts services away from the rightful recipient to him- or herself, despite knowing he or she is not entitled to those services.
For legal purposes, the term “services” includes various utilities (e.g. gas, water, electricity, cable) and professional services (e.g. restaurants, hotels, labor).
What Happens After You Get Arrested in West Valley City?
After a person is arrested in Salt Lake County or other counties in Utah, he or she will be brought to a detention center or county jail for “booking,” which involves fingerprinting, conducting a search, and taking a photo (commonly called a “mugshot”).
After being arrested in Utah, a person may only be detained for 72 hours while the prosecutor decides whether charges should be filed. If the prosecutor is still considering the case once the 72 hours have passed, the detainee should be released. However, prosecutors often request time extensions that keep detainees in jail for many additional days. If your loved one is being held in custody at a county jail, contact Darwin immediately for help. Your loved one’s legal rights may have been violated.
In order to make a warrantless arrest, police officers must either observe a crime, intervene against an emergency, or have probable cause, which is the fact- or observation-based belief that a crime occurred. Having a “hunch” or “gut feeling” alone is not probable cause to justify an arrest.
Darwin will review every action that was taken by the police to determine whether your rights were abused, and will aggressively challenge probable cause at your preliminary hearing. If the judge does not find probable cause to show that a crime was committed, and that the defendant could have been the person who committed the crime, the case must be dismissed due to insufficient evidence.
Penalties for Theft in Utah: Misdemeanor and Felony Fines and Sentencing
Theft of services can be a misdemeanor or a felony depending on factors like the value of the stolen service and whether the defendant used a weapon to commit the crime (which could also result in additional weapons charges). With some exceptions, Utah theft offenses are generally categorized as follows:
- Class B Misdemeanor
- Value — Up to $499
- Fine — Up to $1,000
- Sentence — Up to 6 months in jail
- Class A Misdemeanor
- Value — $500 to $1,499
- Fine — Up to $2,500
- Sentence — Up to 1 year in jail
- Third Degree Felony
- Value — $1,500 to $4,999
- Fine — Up to $5,000
- Sentence — Up to 5 years in prison
- Second Degree Felony
- Value — $5,000 and up
- Fine — Up to $10,000
- Sentence — Up to 15 years in prison
Contact a Utah Criminal Defense Attorney for a Free Consultation
If you or one of your loved ones was arrested for theft of services in Utah, don’t wait to start reviewing your legal situation with an experienced Salt Lake City theft defense lawyer. Call the law offices of Overson Law at (801) 758-2287 today to set up a free legal consultation with Utah criminal attorney Darwin Overson.