Cobb County Receiving Stolen Property Lawyer
Georgia has two statutes in this area. One targets in-state stolen property and one targets out-of-state stolen property. Both laws have an actual or constructive knowledge (should have known) element. A low price usually does not establish constructive knowledge. Many people sell things at very low prices for various reasons. Instead, most courts require some tangible evidence that the item was stolen, like scuff marks or other signs of physical theft. The court also considers weak stories, like “I bought the bike from Joe,” as evidence of constructive knowledge.
These charges are often overwhelming. Frequently, the people who allegedly received stolen property are completely blindsided by these allegations. An experienced Cobb County theft by receiving stolen property lawyer, like Andrew Schhwartz, is a very valuable partner in these situations. Only an experienced lawyer walks you through the complex criminal justice process, starting with jail release and ending with a plea bargain or other resolution. Furthermore, only an experienced lawyer proactively communicates with you, so you are never in the dark.
Beginning a Successful Criminal Defense
A fast start, which includes immediate jail release and a thorough case evaluation, usually guarantees a successful end.
These two things go hand in hand. Incarcerated defendants only have limited contact with their Cobb County theft by receiving stolen property lawyers. This limited contact is usually not a problem in Cobb County. Three immediate jail release options are available:
- Pretrial Release: Usually, defendants charged with nonviolent misdemeanors are eligible for OR (own recognizance) release. Since receiving stolen property is definitely nonviolent, but it’s a felony, an attorney must usually advocate for defendants at these informal hearings.
- Cash Bond: Depositing cash bond with the county is like giving a security deposit to a landlord. If the defendant adheres to all bail conditions, the county refunds most of the deposit. Unfortunately, the bond amount in felony cases could be several thousand dollars.
- Bail Bond: If cash bond is too high, a lawyer usually works with a bail bond company. A bond might be more than 80 percent cheaper than a cash deposit. However, the bail bond premium is nonrefundable.
In complex matters, like large theft ring cases, bail may not be immediately available. In these cases, the judge usually holds a bond hearing within seventy-two hours of the arrest.
Next, during the case evaluation, an attorney looks for any possible procedural and substantive defenses.
Officers must have some evidence that people possess stolen property before they detain these individuals. A mere hunch is insufficient. If the initial contact is illegal, any evidence investigators obtain as a result of that contact, like a confession, is inadmissible in court.
We mentioned criminal intent above. Usually, the state must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the defendant intended to keep the property even though s/he knew it was stolen. Assume Sara owns a pawn shop. She buys items she believes were stolen, but she doesn’t immediately put them on the shelf and try to sell them. Prosecutors may be hard-pressed to prove intent in that situation.
Ending a Successful Criminal Defense
These defenses need not be strong enough to “beat” the charges in court. They must only be strong enough to pressure the state into making a favorable deal.
Frequently, this deal includes pretrial diversion or deferred disposition. Pretrial diversion is like pretrial probation. If the defendant successfully completes about a three-month program, prosecutors dismiss the charge. N-FOG (No Finding of Guilt) probation is a special kind of probation. If the defendant completes the term, the judge dismisses the case.
Either way, the defendant walks away without a criminal conviction staining his/her permanent record.
Rely On a Diligent Cobb County Lawyer
Criminal cases have procedural and substantive defenses. For a free consultation with an experienced motor vehicle theft lawyer in Cobb County, contact Andrew L. Schwartz, P.C. Convenient payment plans are available.