Thank you for asking me “Are there any Defenses to Theft in FL?”
There are standard pretrial and trial defenses that can be raised in any criminal case, but there are some more customized defenses that may be applicable to a theft charge.
Because theft is a specific intent crime the State is required to prove that you took something with the intent to steal it. So if you take possession of an item, but at that time you do not intend to steal it, say, for example that you have a “good faith belief” that you enjoyed a right to possess the property, then your “good faith belief” may negate the State’s proof of intent to steal.
Also, in FL “property” is defined as “anything of value”, and so to be convicted of theft the State has to prove that you stole something of value. So, for instance, if you are accused of taking something that someone had placed outdoors and on the roadside then it might be considered as either “abandoned” or “trash”, presumably it would have no value and could therefore not be the subject of a
Finally, the law in FL is clear that you cannot steal your own property, so if you are an equal co-owner of property then you can’t steal it, and your co-ownership or equal ownership of the property will be a defense to a theft charge. But if a complaining co-owner has a superior legal interest to you in the property then you can be charged with theft.
At Michael A. Haber, PA “it’s all about reasonable doubt”!
Please note that no attorney-client relationship with either Michael A. Haber, PA or Michael A. Haber, Esq. exists as a result of your watching this Webisode series. Further any and all information which is both contained in and may be construed from this Webisode series is generic in nature and should only be considered as informational and not as actual legal advise in any specific case. Should you wish to seek actual legal advise then please feel free to contact Michael A. Haber, Esq. as follows:
Office Phone: 305-381-8686
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