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Nevada Theft Crimes


In Nevada, theft is classified into different types such as robbery, burglary, larceny, and even embezzlement but generally, according to Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) 205.0832, theft means controlling any property of another person with intent of deprivation. It is also defined as taking hold of a property to destroy, conceal or just store that is under another person’s security interest with means of defrauding.

Theft crimes are a complex matter in Nevada and actually holds multitude of layers one must know about if they are accused of one. Read below for further information.

Robbery vs. burglary vs. theft vs. larceny

Often, these terms are interchanged by people, not realizing that they are actually distinct from each other. As we have established below, NRS describes theft as taking one’s property with aims to deprive them of use or possession. And under theft are a variety of specific crimes linking to it. The following are information are useful for you to know what kind of theft you might have done.


What is larceny theft? It is actually one of the most common form of theft crime and is split into two: petit larceny and grand larceny.

According to NRS 205.240, petit larceny is seizing money or any type of property that is valued at $650. This is not grounded by simply taking away another person’s possession—you are also committing larceny if you do not pay goods you have acquired that is priced as mentioned. This is a misdemeanor in Nevada and holds penalties such as six months in jail and fines of no less than $1000. Shoplifting is a form of petit larceny.

Grand larceny, on the other hand, is purposely stealing money or property that is of big value, hence the name. Examples of grand larceny are car theft, stealing prized artifacts, or walking out of a store still wearing clothes of extremely high value. As per NRS 205.220, grand larceny is taking properties that are estimated as more than $650 in value. The penalties for this depends as it can be adjusted according to the worth of what is stolen. However, this is usually a felony and can have one to 10 years prison time and fines of up to $10,000.


Robbery is usual news in Nevada and stands out from the rest of the theft crimes because it is stealing that is performed with force and violence. According to NRS 200.380, robbery constitutes category B felony in Nevada and has punishments of prison time of two years to 15 years.


Breaking into homes, buildings, and even vehicles with means of larceny and robbery is regarded as burglary. This is a category B felony and the accused shall face prison time of not less than a year and not more than 10 years with fines of up to $10,000. If the perpetrator of the theft crime has a weapon that is obtained before or during entering the premises, they shall endure two to 15 years of prison time with the same amount of fine. If previously convicted of the crime, parole shall not be granted.

Other types of theft crimes in Nevada

There are more categories of theft crimes aside from the three prominent ones. They are as follows:


This is a form of petit larceny which is taking a property from a person quickly and without their knowledge. This is very rife in areas of Nevada like the Las Vegas Strip as evident from a string of pickpocket theft crimes early this year that alarmed the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD). Pickpocketing is a felony in Nevada and comprised of consequences such as one to five years in prison and a fine of $10,000 if the property taken was less than $3,500 in worth.

Auto Larceny

NRS 205.228 states that it is illegal to take away a car away from its owner with your full knowledge. Auto larceny constitutes a felony charge and has a diverse set of penalties depending on the value of the car stolen.


Stealing back what was yours legally is called embezzlement. As written in NRS 205.300, anyone who converts money, goods, and property for their own use while it is lawfully a belonging of a company or an employer is a theft crime. Examples are cashiers, bartenders, and store clerks putting money in their own pocket instead of the cash register. This is a misdemeanor in Nevada and has penalties of at least six months in jail, reinstitution to the legal owners of the stolen money and property, and fines of $1,000. If what is embezzled is more than $3,500, one to 10 years in prison coupled with fines of $10,000 is what shall be endured


If you willingly take money or property that you know is stolen, you are committing a theft crime. It is also illegal to possess properties that you know are lost by the owner and things that were looted from disasters, crimes, and other related events.

Defenses to use against accusation of theft crimes

Since there are a lot of variations of theft crimes, you will have to find a unique defense that will solidify your innocence. Nonetheless, here are some of the general defenses that may apply to your charges that you and your criminal defense attorney can discuss over:

  • The money or property was yours and you can show proof
  • You have mistaken the money or property as yours
  • You are nowhere near the place of the supposed crime
  • You were intoxicated at the time of theft and it was done purely by accident
  • The accuser entrapped you for retaliation
  • You returned the money and property the time you learned that it is not yours or it is obtained through stealing

In a fast-paced and extravagant state like Nevada, it is not difficult to encounter certain types of theft crimes. And sometimes you can be the accused instead of the victim. To secure your innocence of the crime, we recommend you work with a criminal defense attorney who knows about theft crimes to ensure you get out of the situation.

As apparent from this article, theft is not simply taking something away from its owner, it can actually be defined differently depending on the manner of the act. With this notion, you should be careful on who to trust and what things are you holding onto to avoid possible theft charges. For more definitions found in the NRS according to theft crimes, you can read the actual laws here.

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