Home Bail for Theft

Helping Those Arrested for Theft

Theft crimes are covered under several different California state laws, and the charges can vary from a minor misdemeanor up to a felony, based on the circumstances and the value of the property allegedly stolen. If you or a loved one have been charged with a theft crime, get help from a licensed and experienced San Diego bail bond agent. We are here to help facilitate a rapid release so you can work with an attorney to prepare a defense.

What Is Theft in California?

Theft crimes are defined in California Penal Code Section 484, and this statute broadly defines theft as any act in which:

a person unlawfully takes someone else’s property with the intent to possess it as their own and deprive the rightful owner of said property.

There are many variations of theft that can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony. The severity of the alleged crime is generally based on:

  • The value of the property alleged to have been stolen,
  • The methods used to perform the crime, and
  • An injury, threat, or use of a weapon.

Theft can occur by force, trickery, fraud, inducement of fear, or other actions.

Variations of Theft in California

Some of the common variations of theft crimes in California include:

  • Shoplifting: The crime of shoplifting involves stealing items from a retail environment that you have legal access to (in other words, the shop is open to you).
  • Petty theft: The theft of any item(s) with a value of under $950 is considered petty theft.
  • Grand theft: The theft of any item(s) with a value of over $950 is considered grand theft.
  • Forgery: Intentionally and unlawfully forging documents, whether those documents are used for theft, is a crime that may be classified as either a misdemeanor or a felony.
  • Passing bad checks: If you intentionally pay for an item with check that there are no funds to cover, or you fail to resolve a bounced check, you may be guilty of a form of forgery called “passing bad checks.”
  • Robbery: Taking another’s property through fear or force is called robbery.
  • Burglary: When you enter a private residence or commercial property with the intent to steal, you may be guilty of the crime of burglary, whether any items were taken or not.

How Bail Is Set for Theft Crimes

Many factors can influence the amount of bail set, including your criminal record, any perceived flight risk, and your county’s bail schedule. A bail schedule is a list of predetermined bail amounts that judges and magistrates use as a basis for setting bail. Some of the common bail amounts of theft crimes in San Diego County include:


Many forms of theft that involve no bodily injury, deadly weapons, or stolen property of a value greater than $950 are considered misdemeanors. Some of the common variations include:

  • Misdemeanor shoplifting: $2,000
  • Misdemeanor Petty theft: $1,000 for a first offense, and up to $5,000 for subsequent offenses
  • Petty theft of an automobile or firearm: $12,500
  • Receiving stolen property: $2,000
  • Misdemeanor grand theft: $5,000
  • Misdemeanor grand theft by an employee: $10,000
  • Misdemeanor forgery: $5,000
  • Passing bad checks: $1,500
  • Burglary: $5,000


Some theft crimes are considered “wobblers,” which means they can be charged as either a felony or a misdemeanor, and some are filed as felony crimes. Some of the common bail amounts for felony theft include:
  • Felony grand theft: $20,000 - $25,000
  • Receiving stolen property worth greater than $950: $20,000
  • Vehicle theft: $25,000
  • Embezzlement: $20,000
  • Forgery: $20,000
  • Felony burglary: $25,000 to $50,000
  • Robbery: $25,000 to $100,000

How Balboa Bail Bonds Can Help

Those accused of theft are usually arrested and then incarcerated in county jail pending release on bail. Not only is it terribly uncomfortable to be held in county jail, but it is challenging to work with your attorney in these conditions.

At Balboa Bail Bonds, we are a full-service bail bond agency. We begin helping to facilitate your release on bail the moment you call us by tracking your case, providing advice, and working with local law enforcement to help in any way we can. We offer:

  • Low 10% premiums on bail bonds
  • All our bail bond agents are veterans with at least five years of experience
  • All our bail bond agents are fluent in both English and Spanish
  • We have access to the resources needed to bail you out 24/7, and you can always reach a real person
  • We offer special discounts to military veterans and active military
  • Our flexible pricing systems make bail affordable to virtually anyone

If you or a loved one are held in jail on theft charges, call us today at (619) 760-2222 to get immediate assistance.

Additional Information