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Felony Theft By Taking? First Offense

Douglasville, GA |

I have a family member who is facing felony theft-by-taking charges. This is their first offense. What can we as the family expect during this process?

What is the penalty for this type of infraction?

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Attorney answers 3


Felony theft by taking carries a punishment from 1 year to 10 years to serve; however, all of it can be probated (and usually is) on a first offense. If the jurisdiction has a Pre-Trial Diversion program, the offender can pay a fee, perform community service, and make restitution in exchange for an outright dismissal. However, the victim must agree to it.

The offender is eligible to be treated under the First Offender statute, which allows the offender to go on probation, pay fines, fees, restitution, perform community service, etc. in exchange for a finding of Not Guilty if the probation term is successfully completed. Usually the state has no objection to First Offender treatment. If the offender messes up on probation, the state can bring the offender back to court and re-sentence the offender to the maximum.

A theft conviction virtually ruins a person's chances of ever getting meaningful employment. That's why it's so important that the accused have representation. Also, the state won't offer First Offender or Pre-Trial Diversion unless the accused is represented.



This is a very helpful write up. My son was charged with Theft by taking and it's his first offense. Initially the charge was for over 500 dollars in court it was established to be around 120. but he still was offered a plea by the state. to plead guilty. Should he plead guilty and ask for the diversion? Thanks


Michael Moody has done a really good job of outlining the options for your family member. I am writing to add that it is very important for this person to get an attorney as soon as possible, as the chances of working something out are much better if the person is not waiting until the last minute to talk to the prosecutor.


You need to hire a local attorney in Douglasville. If you want to know who the local ones are, you can come and watch the calendar call in Judge Emerson's courtroom this Wednesday or Judge McClain this Thursday. Ask around.

More info here:

Don't wait until the last minute.

Good luck.

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