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Types of Virginia theft charges


Virginia categorizes all types of theft as larceny. Within this term, however, the law defines various levels of larceny, each with potential legal consequences based on the severity of the crime.

Review the types of Virginia larceny offenses and the possible penalties for conviction.

Petit larceny

When the value of the stolen property falls below $200, Virginia may impose criminal charges for petit larceny. This offense can result in either a fine of up to $2,500, up to a year in jail or both.

If a person who commits petit larceny has a prior conviction for any type of theft, he or she can receive at least 30 days and up to a year in jail along with a fine at the court’s discretion. A third offense carries at least a year and up to five years in prison.

Grand larceny

These elevated charges apply to stolen property valued above $200 or above $5 if the property is on someone’s person at the time of theft. Virginia also categorizes the theft of weapons as grand larceny. A conviction for this crime carries a minimum of one year and up to 20 years in state prison as a felony. However, the judge in a Virginia grand larceny case has the discretion to downgrade this charge to a misdemeanor offense.

In addition to criminal penalties for larceny, Virginia allows theft victims to seek civil penalties. These can include up to $150 in court costs and lawyer fees along with the greater of twice the stolen merchandise value or $50.

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