Car theft is considered grand larceny in Nevada, and it is defined under NRS 205.228. This is an especially serious felony charge that can have a lasting impact on the defendant’s life. Even after serving a lengthy prison term and paying fines, someone convicted of stealing a car in Nevada may have difficulty getting a job or acquiring a loan. The best way to get these felony charges reduced or dropped is by working with a qualified Las Vegas car theft attorney.
Nevada law says that auto theft has occurred when an individual “intentionally steals, takes and carries away, drives away or otherwise removed a motor vehicle owned by another person.” Accordingly, this law can be applied to numerous situations that might include a friend or child with access to car keys taking a car without permission or making an agreement to buy a car, but then failing to pay for it. A chauffeur or valet also may be charged with auto theft if they take the car that their employer has allotted to them. Similarly, the failure to return a rental car may be charged as auto theft.
An experienced Las Vegas car theft lawyer may be able to argue that no theft actually occurred if there were no eyewitnesses to the alleged crime and if the defendant was not discovered while in possession of the car. Alternatively, someone who reasonably believed that they had the owner’s permission to take the car may be able to show that no theft occurred because they were allowed to have the car in their possession. Occasionally, someone will be accused of stealing a car that legally belongs to them. In this case, the charges are typically dropped once the defendant produces paperwork proving ownership.
Ask a Nevada car theft attorney to help defend you if you have been charged with auto theft.