Sevierville Attorneys Defend Your Rights against Tennessee Grand Theft Charges

What is grand theft?

Theft of property with a value of $500 or more is classified as felony theft under Tennessee law. Depending on the total value of the property, penalties for this charge can prove to be life altering. You have the right to fight for your reputation, your livelihood and your freedom. When faced with grand larceny charges in Pigeon Forge, Seymour, or Gatlinburg, secure an experienced Sevierville criminal defense attorney at Delius & McKenzie, PLLC for a vigorous criminal defense.

Defending against grand larceny charges

Tennessee theft charges are categorized as either misdemeanor theft or felony theft. Any larceny of property with a value of less than $500 is classified as petty theft, which is a Class A misdemeanor. Potential penalties include up to a year in jail and a fine up to $2,500.

Any larceny of property with a value of $500 or more is categorized as a felony theft. Grand theft is a felony charge, but the level of felony depends on the value of the property stolen:

  • For property valued between $500 and $1,000, the charge is a Class E felony, with a potential penalty of one to six years in prison and a fine up to $3,000.
  • For property valued between $1,000 and $10,000, the charge is a Class D felony, punishable by two to 12 years’ imprisonment and a fine up to $5,000.
  • For property valued between $10,000 and $60,000, the charge is a Class C felony, with a potential penalty of three to 15 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000.
  • For property valued above $60,000, the charge is a Class B felony, punishable by eight to 30 years in prison and a fine up to $25,000.

These are serious consequences that require a tenacious attorney to defend against. Trust our Sevierville criminal defense lawyers to fight for your rights.

Fighting a grand theft auto charge: carjacking and joyriding

Unlike many other states, Tennessee does not have a specific grand theft auto statute. However, theft of an automobile may also fall under Tennessee’s general grand theft laws, depending on the value of the vehicle. There are various types of car theft, including:


Carjacking occurs when a car is taken by force when the owner is present. The violence that is often associated with carjacking raises it to a more serious penalty level than simple theft. A carjacking conviction can result in up to 20 years imprisonment.


Joyriding charges in Tennessee are a type of theft where an individual may have had permission to use the car at some point, but instead drove it passed that allotted time of permission. Joyriding charges and accusations are common among family members or friends who may have access to an extra vehicle key. With the assistance of an experienced Sevierville criminal defense lawyer, you may be successful in having these joyriding accusations reduced from theft charges.

Grand theft auto penalties

Except in the case of carjacking, auto theft convictions generally follow the same penalty levels as general theft charges. The crime classification and the applicable punishment depend on the value of the vehicle stolen. A seasoned attorney at our firm has the skills to help you get your charges reduced or even dropped.

Developing a grand-theft charge defense

The state of Tennessee takes grand theft charges very seriously, and prosecution is vigorously pursued. That is why it is imperative to contact a knowledgeable defense attorney as soon as the charges are brought. An experienced lawyer at our firm may use a variety of strategies to defend you. We may assert that you had an ownership interest in the property, which would render the taking a legal one. Lack of intent is another possible defense. We may assert that the owner gave you permission to use the property or that you lacked the necessary capacity to form the required intent. Voluntary return of the property is not, in-and-of itself a defense, however it may be presented to the court as a mitigating factor to lessen the severity of punishment. Let us leverage our experience and extensive knowledge of the law to benefit your defense.

Put experience on your side against Tennessee grand theft charges

The Sevierville criminal defense attorneys at Delius & McKenzie, PLLC have spent more than 20 years defending individuals against allegations of grand theft. Let us put our experience to work in your case. Call us today at 865-428-8780 or fill out our contact form to make an appointment. We are proud to serve clients in Sevierville, Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and throughout Tennessee.