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When does borrowing turning into stealing?

Criminal charges carry with them serious consequences, which is why Georgia residents facing them should not take them lightly. However, sometimes someone may find themselves facing criminal charges, such as those of theft, due to a misunderstanding. What happens if an individual borrowed something but didn’t give it back on time, or forgot to give it back? Does this mean the borrower could face criminal charges? Maybe.

Specific Intent

In order to prove that an individual committed a crime, the prosecution must demonstrate the accused intended to commit it. Therefore, to be convicted of the crime of theft, it must be shown that the accused took something with the intent of never returning it. Theft is one of those crimes that requires specific intent—this means the act was committed for a specific purpose and that is to deprive someone of their property permanently.

Burden of proof

Tt is the prosecutor’s job to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that someone borrowed something without ever intending to give it back and courts can use actions to prove the burden of proof. For example, while the accused may be saying they only borrowed an item but is ignoring repeated requests to return the item, it might be construed that he or she does not intend to give it back.

What may have started out as a misunderstanding or a practical joke can quickly go wrong if any laws are broken. Those facing criminal charges for theft and property crimes may want to consult an experienced attorney for guidance on how to defend their rights and make their voice heard.