Summer is on Jacksonville’s doorstep, and so are potential thieves who are looking to steal one’s property. Summer always shows an increase in property crimes. Police Departments all over the State receive calls from their respective residents about being victims of vehicle burglary, vehicle theft, residential burglaries and vandalism. It is crucially important distinguish who the real perpetrators are, and who is falsely accused.
When it’s warm, people have barbeques, mow lawns, and play in the yard with their children. Most of the time, particularly residences with children, alarm systems normally are off during the day and doors remain unlocked, which leaves potential thieves in Jacksonville an easy way in and out of the home with little knowledge that anyone was there that was not supposed to be.
Many times, bicycles, lawn mowers, tools, vehicles and other various items are reported stolen from open garages each year. An open garage door or an attached garage creates easier access to a home for burglars. However, ease of access creates an ease of fictional story creation as well. Many people unfortunately lie about things that have gone “missing”, in order to gain some sort of benefit, either monetarily or psychologically. Some have even gone so far as to break into other’s residences to place their own property in the home, attempting to frame the victim of the breaking and entering of a theft crime themselves.
The following example shows a common scenario where someone is falsely accused of property theft:
A gated community with security in the Arlington section of Jacksonville has a street with a cul-de-sac of four neighbors. Peter has a disagreement with the Paul over crabgrass that Paul simply will not deal with. In retaliation, Peter breaks into Paul’s garage, unnoticed, and puts his toolbox underneath a shelf where Paul would not notice something new. Peter then reports that his tool box was stolen, tells the police that of the “possibility” about “a neighbor” in the cul-de-sac, which will prompt police to investigate. Many do not refuse a search of their home when they believe they have done nothing wrong. Paul, thinking no wrongdoing, lets police search his garage. The officer subsequently finds Peter’s toolbox and arrests Paul for property theft.
Other scenarios are not as complex but do involve dishonesty like the previous example. Put Peter and Paul in a similar example: Paul needs to borrow Peter’s toolbox and has borrowed it on multiple occasions; however, Peter is supposed to be at work for the next 10 hours. Paul knows the garage door is unlocked and because he has borrowed the toolbox before, he thinks nothing of it, expecting to put it back before Peter returns from work. Peter’s wife goes into the garage and notices the toolbox missing, and calls police. Embarrassed because he knew should not have taken the toolbox, Paul attempts to hide the unintentional theft from Peter, hopefully being able to sneak back in and put the toolbox back. Sometimes, this course of action may work, and in one’s mind, no harm no foul, they got the toolbox back. However, one could be criminally charged for that taking.
Others may claim property in their car or home was stolen in order to file a fraudulent insurance claim for stolen property. However, saying you had property that you never owned is also a crime. If one does own property that might be subject to theft, one should take pictures of the property and/or have other records to prove ownership and value of the property.
A big factor in theft cases is the amount and availability of evidence to prove that the property did in exist and even further, that the property was stolen by someone, and not just placed somewhere or hidden. Someone might claim that they have a 52” LCD screen in the living room, but if they cannot prove it, they have no case when the TV is stolen.
One has one choice of relief in a situation like this. One charged with a crime of this nature should contact an experienced Jacksonville theft crimes defense attorney to fight for one’s case and ensure one’s rights and defenses are known and protected. One can either sit back and wait for the Judge to render a decision against one, or one can take charge of one’s defense and win one’s cause for freedom.
The Forbess Law Firm has been aiding clients who face criminal charges in Jacksonville for years and are here to provide aggressive criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one require a Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer, contact our firm today. We are available through our website or by calling us at 904-634-0900.
Additional Source: Tampa Police Offer Tips to Avoid Summertime Crime, Seminole Heights Patch