Can I get charged for theft

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I get charged for theft

My grandma moved out of the house that
we was renting together leaving behind
some of her things a month and a half
went by and I could no longer keep the
power on or pay rent so I was having to
move when I did I took with me a TV that
had been left behind by my grandma now
she is pressing charges on me for the TV

Asked on August 9, 2018 under Criminal Law, Alabama


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Theft requires an intention to steal; if you reasonably, based on the evidence, believed that your grandmother had abandoned or given up the TV, since she did not take it, that would not be theft since there was no intention to take something you believe belonged to another. If contacted by police, explain what happened to them; if charges are in fact filed, explain in court. To make your situation better, offer (in writing as well as on the phone--you want be able to prove the communication later, if necessary--such as in email or by text or fax) to your grandmother to return the TV; explain you'd only taken it because since she'd left it behind after moving out, you assumed she had give it, but that now that you know she did not, you will return it.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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