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What are the Penalties for Stealing Scrap Metal in Reno?

Posted by Neil Shouse | Jan 05, 2016 | 0 Comments

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There is big money to be made in scrap metal. While selling scrap metal found on the street or in alleys or garbage in Reno may be a good source of cash, stealing scrap metal from homes, businesses, or public property can be a good source of Nevada criminal charges.

Stealing, taking, and carrying away scrap metal or utility property is a specified criminal offense under Nevada law. NRS 205.267 provides that: 

  • A person who intentionally steals, takes and carries away scrap metal or utility property with a value of less than $650 within a period of 90 days is guilty of a Nevada misdemeanor. Upon conviction, the penalty can include up to six months in Washoe County Jail and up to $1,000 in fines.
  • A person who intentionally steals, takes and carries away scrap metal or utility property with a value greater than $650 but less than $3,500 within a period of 90 days is guilty of a category C felony. Punishment can include up to five years in Nevada State Prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
  • If the value of the scrap metal or utility property taken is $3,500 or more, it will be charged as a category B felony and shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for up to 10 years, and by a fine of up to $10,000.

In addition to time behind bars and fines, a court can order that an individual convicted of stealing scrap metal pay restitution and perform community service as follows:

  • For a first offense, 100 hours of community service.
  • For a second offense, 200 hours of community service.
  • For a third or subsequent offense, up to 300 hours of community service for up to one year, as determined by the court.

In determining the value of the scrap metal or utility property taken, the cost of repairing and, if necessary, replacing any property damaged by the theft of the scrap metal or utility property must be added to the value of the property.

If you have been charged with stealing scrap metal in Reno or anywhere within Washoe County, you could be facing serious jail time and other consequences as set forth above. Please give one of our skilled Reno criminal defense lawyers a call to discuss your case.

About the Author

Neil Shouse

Southern California DUI Defense attorney Neil Shouse graduated with honors from UC Berkeley and Harvard Law School (and completed additional graduate studies at MIT).

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