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What Is the Difference Between Auto Burglary and Grand Theft Auto?

A jail cell with bars over the window.

In California, theft-related crimes, such as car theft, are taken very seriously, and if found guilty, the offender can face severe legal consequences. Auto burglary and grand theft auto are two theft-related crimes that are often used interchangeably but they are not the same thing.

In this blog post, we will examine the differences between auto burglary and grand theft auto, including the penalties you can face if convicted of either crime.

What Is Auto Burglary?

Auto burglary in California is the act of entering a locked vehicle or its trunk with the intent to either steal the car, steal property inside, or commit another crime within the confines of the vehicle. The offense can be classified as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances.

What Is Grand Theft Auto?

Grand Theft Auto (GTA) is the crime of stealing a car or any other automobile. It is considered a severe crime as it involves stealing property worth more than $950. In California, GTA can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony.

How Are Auto Burglary and Grand Theft Auto Different?

The primary difference between auto burglary and grand theft auto is the act that defines each crime. Auto burglary occurs when someone unlawfully enters a vehicle with the intent to steal something from inside the vehicle or the vehicle itself. On the other hand, grand theft auto is the act of stealing a vehicle with the intention of permanently depriving the owner of the vehicle.

Possible Legal Consequences for Auto Burglary and Grand Theft Auto

As mentioned earlier, auto burglary and grand theft auto can both be charged as felonies or misdemeanors in California. The legal consequences for both can include probation, fines, a few months in jail, or several years in prison. In addition, both could result in a criminal record, which could make it difficult to secure a job or find a place to live.

Our Auto Burglary and Grand Theft Auto Defense Lawyers in Fresno Offer Free Consultations. Contact Us Today!

If you find yourself facing charges for grand theft auto or auto burglary in California, don't hesitate to reach out to our experienced criminal defense team at Appel & Morse. We are passionate about protecting your rights and ensuring a fair judgment.

With our long history of successfully helping clients, we can assist you in building a strong defense. Our goal is to secure the best possible outcome for your situation, potentially even helping you have the charges against you reduced or dismissed.

For information about legal defenses for grand theft auto and auto burglary charges in California, or to discuss your situation with our experienced criminal defense attorneys, give us a call at (805) 467-6060 or fill out our online contact form today to schedule a free consultation.

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