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 Theft offenses in Kentucky vary greatly in severity.  The penalties for these crimes can be misdemeanors or felonies, and range from imprisonment of less than one (1) to more than twenty (20) years in prison. 


The crime of theft covers a broad range of activity. The most common is theft by unlawful taking, which is contained in KRS §§ 514.030.  The law requires proof that an individual (1) takes or exercises control over property of another with the intent to deprive him/her of such OR (2) obtains immovable property of another or any interest therein with intent
to benefit himself or another not entitled to such.   However, there are multiple other areas, including theft by failure to make required disposition, theft by deception, theft of controlled substances, theft of identity and many other areas of the law criminalizing very specific types of conduct. There is also a related charge of receiving stolen property.

Theft crimes are treated more severely based upon the value of the theft. The value of the alleged theft often determines the level of the potential penalty.


Any theft that also alleges an invasion of property rises to the level of Burglary.  However, Burglary can also be charged in instances where no theft is alleged.  The Kentucky definition of Burglary is the unlawful entry into a property with an intent to commit a crime while in the property. KRS §§ 511.020, 511.030, and 511.040.  Because the invasion of an individual's home is considered invasion of a sacred place, both robbery and burglary charges are normally punished more severely by judges and prosecutors.

The penalty for burglary offenses can range from one (1) to twenty (20) years in prison.


If there is an allegation of violence OR the threat of violence associated with the theft, it will increase the crime to Robbery.

The penalty for Robbery offenses can range from five (5) to twenty (20) years in prison.

Common Defense Strategies:

These offenses are frequently charged and based solely upon circumstantial evidence.  In addition, witness identifications are ripe with credibility issues.  Amanda’s vast courtroom experience allows her to quickly spot and focus on evidentiary issues that may lead to amendment or dismissal of these charges.

If you have been arrested, charged, or are being investigated for a burglary or robbery, do not wait – call for a free consultation today!