WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A CARJACKING AND AN AUTO THEFT?

Posted on: February 2, 2015 by in Criminal Defense
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California Penal Code 215 and 663

orange county criminal defense attorneyWhen someone steals a parked car, it’s auto theft. But when someone takes a car directly from another person by using force or intimidation, it’s carjacking. If you’re charged with carjacking in Orange County, you’re going to need serious legal help right away. Immediately contact an experienced Orange County criminal defense attorney.

Under California Penal Code 215, a carjacking is defined as the use of force or fear to take a motor vehicle from another person with the intent to permanently or temporarily deprive that person of the vehicle. A carjacking charge is a felony charge, and if convicted, a suspect could serve up to nine years in a California prison. If a weapon is used in a carjacking, the prison term can be even longer. Under California Penal Code 663, even an unsuccessful attempt to carjack a vehicle can be prosecuted as a carjacking.

Of course, to be convicted for carjacking or any other offense, a prosecutor must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. If you are accused of carjacking because someone has misidentified you, or if no carjacking took place and the accusation against you was entirely fabricated, an experienced criminal defense attorney can make sure that your version of the incident is fully explained and clearly understood.

Criminal charges are tough for anyone to deal with, but if you’re charged with carjacking, take advantage of your right to remain silent, and do not try to act as your own lawyer. Don’t plead guilty or accept any plea bargain before consulting a defense attorney. When you’re accused of committing any crime, you must act to protect your freedom and your future. Obtain the legal advice and representation that you’re really going to need if you’re charged with carjacking, and call an experienced Orange County criminal defense attorney immediately.