California Vehicle Theft Crimes and Penalties

California Vehicle Theft Crimes and Penalties

California Vehicle Theft Crimes and Penalties

There are a few laws in California which impose criminal charges for taking a vehicle without permission in California. A few common criminal charges involving vehicle theft crimes are:

  • Unauthorized Use of Vehicle Vehicle Code Section 10851 VC, otherwise known as “Joyriding”, which involves the unlawful taking or tampering with a vehicle
  • Carjacking California Penal Code Section 215 PC
  • Grand Theft Auto Penal Code Section 487(d)(1) PC

Grand Theft Auto Criminal Charges in California

Under California law Grand Theft Auto Penal Code 487(d)(1) is a vehicle crime that may be charged as misdemeanor or as felony. In order for you to be charged with 487(d)(1) the prosecutor must prove the following elements:

  1. The defendant took a vehicle owned by another person;
  2. The defendant took the vehicle without the vehicle owner’s permission or consent;
  3. When the defendant took the car, s/he intended to permanently keep the car or keep it for such a period of time that the owner would be deprived of its value or use of the vehicle; and
  4. The defendant moved the car, even a short distance, and kept it for a period of time, however brief.

If you or someone you love has been accused of grand theft auto charges in Los Angeles, it is important to understand the penalties that accompany theft crimes convictions. We invite you to contact our the Manuelian Law Firm and speak to a experienced grand theft auto criminal defense attorney in Los Angeles. Call now for a free consultation and case review at (213) 401-2777.

Joyriding VC 10851(a) Theft and Injury of Vehicle Charges in California

Criminal charges for Vehicle Code 10851(a) VC also known as, “Joyriding” in California involves “any person who drives or takes a vehicle not his or her own, without the consent of the owner thereof, and with intent either to permanently or temporarily deprive the owner thereof of his or her title to or possession of the vehicle.” Penalties for Joyriding charges in California is punishable by imprisonment and/or fine up to $5,000.

What Does the Prosecution Have to Prove In Order to Be Found Guilty of  VC 10851(a)?

In order to find the defendant guilty of VC 10851(a), the district attorney must prove that the defendant:

  • Took, or drove, someone else’s vehicle without the owner’s consent, and
  • When the defendant took the vehicle, he or she intended to deprive the owner of possession or ownership of the vehicle for any period of time

Carjacking California Penal Code Section 215 PC

Carjacking is the unlawful taking of a vehicle in the possession of another, from them, or in their immediate presence without their permission, and with the intent to permanently or temporarily deprive that person. of the vehicle.

California Penal Code Section 215 PC is a follows: 

(a) “Carjacking” is the felonious taking of a motor vehicle in the possession of another, from his or her person or immediate presence, or from the person or immediate presence of a passenger of the motor vehicle, against his or her will and with the intent to either permanently or temporarily deprive the person in possession of the motor vehicle of his or her possession, accomplished by means of force or fear.

Carjacking is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for a term of:

  • Three, five, or nine years.

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