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Photo Of Kyle B. Sawyer

Charged With A Crime? It Doesn’t Mean You’re Guilty.

Motor Vehicle Theft

Motor Vehicle Theft In Jefferson County, Colorado And Its Definition

Motor Vehicle Theft in Jefferson County, Colorado, involves taking a car, but not taking a car by force, violence or the use of a deadly weapon. Let’s look at this crime so you can be more prepared to defend your future and freedom.

Definition Of Motor Vehicle Theft In Arapahoe County, Colorado

When our lawyers talk about the Arapahoe County Court definition of Motor Vehicle Theft, we are referring to that definition a jury will be given at the close of the evidence during a trial. Then, the jury is supposed to decide whether the government proved that the person on trial did some act which met each part of the definition – referred to as the elements. Here are the elements for Motor Vehicle Theft:

(1st part) A person knowingly obtains or exercises control over the motor vehicle of another without authorization or by threat or deception and:

(2nd part – one of these)

1. Keeps possession or control for more than 24 hours

2. Attempts or actual does alter or disguise the appearance of the motor-vehicle, car, truck or motorcycle

3. Changes the vehicle identification number of the vehicle

4. Uses the motor vehicle in the commission of a crime

5. Causes $500 of damage to the vehicle while in his possession or while attempting to gain possession

6. Causes bodily injury to another person when they have possession of the car or truck or motorcycle

7. Removes the motor-vehicle from Colorado for more than twelve hours

Felony Classes of Motor Vehicle Theft in Douglas County and Adams County

In Douglas County, Colorado, and Adams County, Colorado, this crime can be a class five, class four or a class three felony, all of which are punishable by a sentence to the Colorado Department of Corrections. A class 3 felony occurs (first-degree motor vehicle theft) if the person has been convicted of motor vehicle theft two prior times. It is a class 4 felony (second-degree motor vehicle theft) if one or more of the above aggravating factors are present.

Motor Vehicle Theft is a class 5 felony (third-degree motor vehicle theft) if someone knowingly steals or keeps a car that isn’t there’s and none of the above aggravating factors occur.

Misdemeanor Motor Vehicle Theft in Colorado | Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle

Beginning July 1st 2023, a misdemeanor motor vehicle theft crime will apply throughout Colorado known as unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. You commit CRS 18-4-409.5 if you:

  • obtain or exercise control over another’s vehicle without authorization,
  • AND no criminal offense is committed other than a misdemeanor traffic crime (other than eluding a police officer) in the course of obtaining or exercising control the vehicle,
  • AND the vehicle is returned to the owner or police within 24 hours of it being reported missing with no damage

Unauthorized use of a motor vehicle is a class 1 misdemeanor in Denver, Aurora, and Lakewood. Defendants in these cases face up to 364 days in county jail and fines of up to $1,000.

Never speak with police about an accusation of Motor Vehicle Theft. They are trying to get you to admit the elements of the crime to convict you. Instead, call our affordable criminal defense lawyers at 303-731-0719. Together, we can protect your future.

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