What is Petty Theft?

Everyone understands the concept of theft, and how bad it is. However, once law enforcement gets involved, it can get confusing for many people not familiar with their terminology. Law enforcement officers have many different phrases and terms for different crimes. These terms help the officers identify the severity of crime, and many other factors. For civilians, these terms can be confusing.

One such term would be petty theft. Most people understand it means something was stolen, but we do not know the specifics. We do not even know the severity of the punishment for petty theft.

In the state of California, petty theft is defined as the unlawful taking of property that is valued at $950 or less...