The value of the property in determining the level of theft is the current market value. These items were probably not truly worthless (doubtful, as everything has *some* value - even in scrap or recycling), but their value would likely be less than market value.
Obviously, you need a good local criminal defense attorney to represent you on these charges. The value will be one aspect of the case... whether they were abandoned and therefore not anyone's property any longer may be another.
Don't post anything else online - consult with and hire an attorney.
The above answer is for general information only and is based on the information you posted. Every case is fact dependent, so to get a thorough analysis of your situation, you will need to consult face to face with an attorney licensed to practice in the jurisdiction where the incident took place. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case.
Not sure if you have already been arrested and charged, or are they just investigating. They would have to prove some value of the items totaling more than $900 for PC 487. If they have no value, i wouldn't think the DA would file charges. Would need more facts about how many were taken and how they figured out it was you. If charges have already been filed in court, you should retain an experienced attorney to represent you.
These days, the District Attorney's office is much more prone to file Felonies, then when I was a Deputy District Attorney. You really should call an experienced attorney and go over all the facts, and let an expert give you the advise you need. Many attorneys here on AVVO offer FREE telephonic consultations, so make a call......David Wallin
What do you mean your "job was to break/test products"? Who called police?
Sounds like you have some information missing from what you have provided.
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Well for one, do you know for certain you are being charged with the 487 or were you merely booked for 487. Big difference. An evaluation of your case is fact dependent, you should sit down with a local attorney to go over the reports in your case in detail. Many of us on Avvo offer free consults. Call around.