In North Carolina, larceny is defined under N.C.G.S. 14-72.
Larceny, which is commonly referred to as theft or stealing, is a property crime in North Carolina and generally must meet all of the following elements:
- The taking of property;
- The carrying away of said property;
- Without consent;
- With the intent to deprive the victim of the property;
- And the knowledge that the property did not belong to the defendant.
The severity of the consequences of the larceny will depend on the facts and circumstances alleged by the state, including the value of the items that were taken, the person they were taken from, and the manner in which that occurred.
Under North Carolina larceny statutes, if the value of stolen goods is less than $1,000, an individual may be charged with a Class I misdemeanor. The Punishment for a Class 1 Misdemeanor in North Carolina, depending on the defendant’s criminal record, can be anywhere from unsupervised probation to a sentence of 120 days in Jail
Felony Larceny – North Carolina felony larceny can be charged under a variety of circumstances.
Examples of felony larceny in general:
- Under North Carolina larceny statutes, if the value stolen goods are more than $1,000
- Larceny from a person regardless of value
- Larceny of a firearm regardless of value
- Larceny of an explosive or incendiary device
- Larceny committed during a breaking and entering of a building or dwelling
- Larceny committed during the breaking and entering of a place of worship
Generally these instances of larceny are charged as class H felonies as long as the value of the items alleged to be stolen are less than $100,000.
Larceny by a Servant or an Employee – This larceny is always punished as a felony regardless of how small the value in question is.
The larceny by employee statute generally makes it illegal for “any servant or other employee, to whom any money, goods, or other chattels” have been given by his “master,” to “go away with” the property with the intent to steal it, or to “embezzle” or “convert” them……..N.C.G.S. 14-74
When the value of the property is less than $100,000, this larceny will be punished as a Class H Felony.
When the value of the property is more than $100,000 this larceny will be punished as a Class C felony.
Punishments for Felony Larceny:
The punishment for a Class H felony in North Carolina, depending on the defendant’s criminal record, can be anywhere between 4 months unsupervised probation, to 39 months active prison time.
The Punishment for a Class C felony in North Carolina depending on the defendant’s criminal record can be anywhere between 44 months active prison, to 204 months active prison time.
Unlawful Concealment (Concealment of Goods/Shoplifting) is a separate charge that is similar to larceny. Unlawful concealment is less serious than larceny – it is a Class 3 Misdemeanor (whereas larceny is a Class 1 Misdemeanor, which is two classes higher). A person can be charged with Unlawful Concealment if the following elements are met:
- Willfully concealing goods or merchandise in a store;
- Without authority;
- Without having purchased the goods or merchandise;
- While still on the premises of the store.
If you have been charged with larceny or another theft offense, it is always a good idea to contact a lawyer.