Auto Thefts Most Common in West

A recent report from the National Insurance Crime Bureau reveals that the American West has the highest auto theft rates in the nation, this despite the national rates of car theft declining over the last 6 years.

Interestingly smaller and midsized cities outranked the larger ones this past year, with the town of Laredo Texas getting the number one spot. The first large city on the list is San Francisco, ranked at #7. All but 4 of the top ten were California towns and cities.

As car theft rates vary widely from state to state, so do the laws that govern them. In some states, a theft is a theft, with the only thing differentiating them is the value of the item stolen. In other states, you are only charged with a specific auto-theft crime if someone was in the vehicle (a carjacking).

In California, for instance, there is a specific category of theft for the stealing of vehicles. Grand Theft Auto can be filed as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances of the crime. If this isn’t your first charge the prosecutor will likely opt for a felony charge.

In Arizona, Theft of a Vehicle is a Class 4 felony, regardless of how many offenses you have on your record. There a Class 4 felony carries a potential 2 ½ years in prison.

As you move from state to state, the potential penalties for a charge of auto theft fluctuate greatly. The circumstances of your particular case can also mean a completely different penalty between you and someone else charged in the same county.

When you are facing charges of auto theft, regardless of the location, the only way to be certain of what you are facing is by speaking with an attorney. We maintain a network of attorneys across the country and likely have one in your area.

Contact us today for a free consultation on your case, regardless of the charges.

About David Matson