What Is Larceny?
The crime of larceny involves the taking of someone else’s physical personal property without their consent. The criminal must have taken the property with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of it. Often, larceny is categorized under theft.
What Is The Difference Between Larceny and Theft?
As we just stated, some states consider larceny to be theft as well. Even though they are very similar, they are not the same crime. Theft broadly encompasses the taking of someone’s property without their consent. For example, skipping out on a check and not paying for food. Sometimes, theft doesn’t involve taking physical property and objects like larceny does.
Different Types of Larceny
- Grand Larceny: The theft of property over a certain value (determined by each state) without the consent of the owner.
- Petty Larceny: The theft of property under a certain value (determined by each state) without the consent of the owner. This is also often referred to as petit larceny.
- Felony Larceny: This is another term some states use to refer to grand larceny, depending on the circumstances. It’s used to refer to someone facing a felony charge for larceny.
Degrees Of Larceny
- Petit (Petty) Larceny: The value of the stolen property is less than a certain value (usually $1000).
- Grand Larceny in the 4th Degree: The value of the stolen property is more than $1000.
- Grand Larceny in the 3rd Degree: The value of the stolen property is more than $3000.
- Grand Larceny in the 2nd Degree: The value of the stolen property is more than $50,000.
- Grand Larceny in the 1st Degree: The value of the stolen property is more than $1 million.
What Larceny Charges Can Someone Face?
The charges someone who has committed larceny will face depends on the type of larceny and degree the crime falls under. Petty larceny criminals will likely be charged with a misdemeanor. The penalty for grand larceny depends on the degree it falls into. The criminal may face either misdemeanor or felony charges.
Real-Life Examples of Larceny
49-year-old Thomas Prusik-Parkin and his accomplice were charged with 47 counts of impersonating Parkin’s deceased mother, Irene Prusik, in 2009. He gave the funeral director a false social security number and date of birth so her death wouldn’t be filed. Then, he collected her social security checks, took out a mortgage in her name, and filed for bankruptcy in her name so he could pay his rent. He continued his scheme for six years after his mother’s death. In 2012, he was convicted of Grand Larceny and faced up to 83 years in jail.
Back in 2007, Malik Cupid was the chief of staff for the New Jersey secretary of state. He met lawyer and rank captain of the United States Army, Terra Melson. While she was deployed in Baghdad, he assumed her identity and stole $1,400 from her bank account electronically. He also intercepted her emails by logging into her account. At the time, he was charged with four felony counts including grand larceny. He pled guilty to felony eavesdropping and a misdemeanor of attempted eavesdropping. This story made headlines because it happened to occur on Valentine’s Day.
Janet Miller, 39, was charged with and pled guilty to grand larceny after using her fortune-telling scheme to get $600,000 from a customer. Miller used the emotional state of her victim to get more money from her. She claimed her deceased loved ones were crying and saying she could help cure her father’s cancer. She even went as far as to say she needed to cleanse her victim’s money of evil spirits. She faced one year of jail time, had to pay $300,000 in restitution, and gave back two Rolex watches her victim gave her.
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*This article is for informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice.