Oklahoma Laws on Petit and Grand Larceny

Learn how Oklahoma defines, classifies, and punishes petit and grand larceny offenses.

By , Attorney · University of Houston Law Center
Updated April 01, 2024

Oklahoma's larceny statute covers a broad range of prohibited conduct, including theft, embezzlement, receiving stolen property, larceny of lost property, shoplifting, and similar offenses.

How Oklahoma Defines Larceny and Theft

A person commits larceny by taking and carrying away another's personal property of value by fraud or stealth and with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of the property. The larceny statute breaks down the crime, even further, into petit and grand larceny based on the value of the stolen property or the circumstances involved.

Oklahoma criminal statutes outline several specific larceny-related offenses, such as embezzlement, receiving stolen property, and larceny of lost property. These prohibited acts share similar penalties to those of larceny.

(Okla. Stat. tit. 21, §§ 1451, 1701, 1702, 1713 (2024).)

Classification and Penalties for Larceny in Oklahoma

Oklahoma categorizes most larceny offenses based on the value of the property stolen and, in some cases, the circumstances surrounding the offense.

Petit Larceny

The lowest-level theft offense in Oklahoma is referred to as petit larceny, which involves stolen property valued at less than $1,000—a misdemeanor. Such an offense subjects the offender to up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Grand Larceny

The punishments for grand larceny vary depending on the value of the stolen property or the circumstances surrounding the crime.

  • If the property is a firearm, taken from the person of another, or valued at $1,000 or more but less than $2,500, the judge can sentence a defendant to pay up to a $1,000 fine, plus either jail time up to one year or prison time up to two years.
  • If the property involved is $2,500 or more but less than $15,000, the guilty party faces up to a $1,000 fine, plus either jail time up to one year or prison time up to five years.
  • If the stolen property has a value of $15,000 or more, the offender can spend up to eight years in prison and pay a $1,000 fine.

(Okla. Stat. tit. 21, §§ 1704, 1705, 1706, 1716, 1719 (2024).)

How Oklahoma Defines and Punishes Larceny of Merchandise (Shoplifting)

Like many states, Oklahoma's shoplifting laws provide for both criminal and civil penalties. A person commits larceny of merchandise (shoplifting) by stealing goods from a retailer.

Criminal Penalties for Shoplifting

The criminal penalties for shoplifting depend on the value of the stolen merchandise, as well as how many previous convictions the shoplifter has.

Misdemeanor. If the stolen items are valued at less than $1,000, the offender is guilty of a misdemeanor for a first or second conviction. Such a misdemeanor subjects the guilty party to up to 30 days in jail and a fine of $10 to $500. For a third or subsequent offense, the defendant faces up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Felony. If the taken goods are worth $1,000 or more but less than $2,500, the shoplifter commits a felony, punishable by up to two years in prison and a $1,000 fine. If the defendant steals items worth $2,500 or more but less than $15,000, they face up to five years in prison and a $1,000 fine. An offender faces up to eight years in prison if the merchandise has a value of $15,000 or more.

Civil Penalties for Shoplifting

In addition to criminal penalties, a person who shoplifts in Oklahoma (or the parent or legal guardian of a minor who shoplifts) may be civilly liable to the store owner for:

  • the retail price of the merchandise (if it's no longer sellable) or the percentage of the diminished value of the merchandise
  • the store owner's attorneys' fees and court costs in bringing the civil case, and
  • exemplary or punitive damages (basically a civil fine meant to discourage or deter shoplifting).

Instead of paying exemplary or punitive damages, the judge may order the offender to perform community service.

(Okla. Stat. tit. 21, §§ 1731, 1731.1 (2024).)

Talk to an Attorney

If you have been charged with larceny or a similar offense, contact a local criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. An experienced lawyer will be able to thoroughly discuss your options with you. A conviction for larceny or a related offense can negatively affect one's future employment opportunities, ability to qualify for housing, and even immigration status.

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