Theft/Criminal Trespass/Criminal Damage

A person is alleged to have committed theft under A.R.S. §13-1802 if without lawful authority, the person knowingly:

1. Controls property of another with the intent to deprive the other person of such property; or

2. Converts for an unauthorized term or use services or property of another entrusted to the defendant or placed in the defendant’s possession for a limited, authorized term or use; or

3. Obtains services or property of another by means of any material misrepresentation with intent to deprive the other person of such property or services; or

4. Comes into control of lost, mislaid or misdelivered property of another under circumstances providing means of inquiry as to the true owner and appropriates such property to the person’s own or another’s use without reasonable efforts to notify the true owner; or

5. Controls property of another knowing or having reason to know that the property was stolen; or

6. Obtains services known to the defendant to be available only for compensation without paying or an agreement to pay the compensation or diverts another’s services to the person’s own or another’s benefit without authority to do so.

A person commits theft if, without lawful authority, if the the person knowingly takes control, title, use or management of a vulnerable adult’s property while acting in a position of trust and confidence and with the intent to deprive the vulnerable adult of the property. Proof that a person took control, title, use or management of a vulnerable adult’s property without adequate consideration to the vulnerable adult may give rise to an inference that the person intended to deprive the vulnerable adult of the property.

Affirmative defenses can be raised to a charge of theft including but not limited to the property being given as a gift or that the transaction was approved by the superior court.

The extent or value of the property or services taken without lawful authority also dictates the classification of the offense as a felony ($1,000.00 and up) or misdemeanor (less than $1,000.00) charge.

Criminal Damage

Is defined under A.R.S. §13-1602, as recklessly:

1. Defacing or damaging property of another person; or

2. Tampering with property of another person so as substantially to impair its function or value; or

3. Tampering with or damaging the property of a utility.

4. Parking any vehicle in such a manner as to deprive livestock of access to the only reasonably available water.

5. Drawing or inscribing a message, slogan, sign or symbol that is made on any public or private building, structure or surface, except the ground, and that is made without permission of the owner.

As no intent is required to be demonstrated by the State in prosecuting criminal damage matters, careful attention must be paid to the manner in which the property in question was damaged, the extent of the damage, the ownership of the property in question, and the actual circumstances leading to the damage of the property.

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