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Is it a felony if a family member steals from you?
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Is it a felony if a family member steals from you?

My stepson used to live with us. His Dad made him leave our house because he was abusive, messy, inconsiderate and possibly on drugs. He stole from me back then, and he stole from me yesterday.

He has been living with friends for the last 10 months. We found out he was kicked out of thier house and has been living on the streets. On Thursday he called his Dad in terrible trouble. seems that there was an altercation and he was almost stabbed. My husband showed up and the police were involved, so he brought him back home. He looked dirty, unkept, fidgety & angry. It scared me!

On Saturday my husband and I went fishing and left him at our house which I didn't want to do. My husband said I was being paranoid. I decided maybe he was right so I went. My mistake.

We returned, my bedroom had been broken into. My diamond earrings money stamp coin collection & luggage was GONE. We looked for him to no avail. Wanted to file a police report but my husband said they can't do anything.


amazingly intelligent
Yes, they can do something. You'll have to decide if the valuables were worth the discomfort of pressing charges. Some would say it is tough love. Others would just cut their losses and be more cautious when the son comes around again.
Your stepson is spiraling down for sure. If he continues on this path he will certainly end up in jail or worse. I wish you the best in this situation.
Felony charges depend on the dollar amount of the stolen goods. This may vary from state to state. Sorry for all your losses, the most precious one, of course, being trust.

Mickey Mouse Spears
What's considered a felony varies from state to state. Some states consider it a felony to steal anything over $1000, some $5000. Other states will file burglary charges if a person enters another place with the intent to commit a crime (even steal). Whether the victim is a family member or not isn't usually taken into consideration when it comes to breaking the law and whether the state's attorney will pursue felony charges.

Charges for "breaking & entering" would not be filed if he was allowed to stay at your house. Vandalism, a misdemeanor in most cases, might apply if damage was done to the door in order to gain access to an interior room.

Oh yes they can! It doesn't matter if he is family or not. My neighbor was in a similar situation and they pressed charges. It sounds like he is out of control and may need to be slowed down. I'm sorry that you gave the benefit of the dought just for him to betray you and your husband. You guys must feel horrible. I hope you get everything worked out. Good luck!

This is terrible. I am so sorry that you and your family are going through something like this.

Sadly, YES, it is a felony if your stepson or any other family member is found guilty at stealing something over a specified value amount. Based on the assumption that your belongings were worth more than $1000, I would say it is safe to assume he very well could be convicted of a felonious crime.

You did not ask for an opinion as to whether or not you should press charges and it is clear your husband thinks not, but I would suggest doing so for sake of your stepson. With intervention through the courts, he may be required to participate in some kind of detox or drug rehabilitation program.
You cannot deal with his emotional problems, nor can he if he is self-medicating with drugs until he first gets clean and sober.

Many cannot understand or grasp the concept of, tough love or "not enabling" your stepson to ruin or run the family unit. Enduring life with him running the home can result in many uproars, conflicts, arguments, battles, and sometimes psychical and verbal abuse. Tough love is exactly that: TOUGH. Loving our children is unconditional, but we don’t have to like what they are doing or how they are destroying their lives.

There will come a time when a parent realizes enough is enough! This is the time that they need the support from outside sources, such as support groups, along with professional intervention. This does not reflect you as a parent, nor does it place blame on the family, it is your stepson that is making the bad choices and the family is suffering from it.

Douglas D
He was wrong to tell you that you are being paranoid when you don't trust your stepson, & he is wrong to tell you that the cops can do nothing.

His son became a drug addict by the choices that he made, but the choices that your husband is making are only going to serve to make the whole situation worse.
I suspect that your husband wants to keep the cops out of this because he thinks he is protecting his son from further harm, WRONG AGAIN!!!!!

Your stepson is deep into a serious drug addiction problem that he can only get out of with some serious addiction treatment & rehabilitation. He won't benefit from any of that unless he is ready to accept treatment, & he won't be ready to accept treatment as long as he can continue on with his lifestyle choices without suffering any serious consequences.
Now what kind of consequenses will be taken seriously by your stepsonh, only he can answer, but I am talking about consequences like doing some time in jail for stealing.

Oh, by the way, stealing is stealing. It involves the taking of property that doesn't belong to you, no matter what the relationship is that you have with your victim, so yes he committed a felony & going to jail for that could be the catayst that causes him to ask for help getting out of his addiction to drugs, but your husband wants to "save him" from that & allow him to keep on with his addictive behaviours instead. No doubt that your stepson took your valuables so he could use them to acquire more drugs to feed his habit. Addicts like him don't consider the future beyond their next fix, so he will soon be back at your door one way or the other, & he will be ready to steal from you again at the 1st oppourtunity.

In the last three years I have been involved with recovery from addiction (not for me BTW) & I have seen families like yours over & over again. If you want to find a shorter path to the end of your stepson's addiction then you must start by reporting his crimes against you to the police. I urge you!

Furthermore, DON"T LET HIM IN YOUR HOUSE EVER AGAIN, unless & until he willingly & successfully completes a drug rehabilitation programme. Even then make him earn your trust back in slow & carefull stages.
I am sorry you lost your valuables. Chances are you won't see them again. Now tell your husband if he wants his son back from drugs then he has to start playing hardball with him. Please, whatever you do don't just take my word or it. Contact any or all drug treatment centres near you for help. Not only for your stepson, but for you, your husband & the rest of your families. So many times well intended family members try to "help" their addicted loved ones & only end up suffering many hardships unneccessarily. You can learn what helps, & what harms but you can't do it on your own so check around for all the help and support that you can get.
There is also ALANON at: http://www.al-anonfamilygroups.org/meetings/meeting.html
Good Luck!

I do 26.2
It is against the law for him to steal from you.

You can file a police report against your stepson, and chances are he will go to jail.

Also, if you're a homeowner, and have a personal property clause in your homeowner's insurance policy, you could possibly file a claim for your losses if they are not recovered.

A felony is not based on who does the stealing but the amount of what was taken. It is anything over $500.00 in Oregon. And yes! The police can do something, but your husband probably can't reconcile "doing anything" to his son. But, the kid is in trouble..deep trouble and you both know it. I would go to the D.A. discuss options, a D.A. can make recommendations that a judge will listen to such as telling the judge you will settle for 90 days in an inpatient drug rehab facility, or gambling facility etc. Whatever the problem is. But it reeks of an addiction problem of some kind. You would NOT be hurting him. You would be helping him. The streets will hurt him. Good luck to you.

Diane the Succubus (PFLAG)
Stealing no matter who does it is a crime... The monitary value of the goods taken determine whether or not it is a felony or misdemeanor crime...

Immediately call the police and file a report... Then do a bit of research/ detective work yourself visit local pawn shops and see if you see your goods.. If you do call the police they can go to the shop and aquirre the goods and pawn slip saying who pawned it to use in the case against who ever stole it...

robin b
Even though it is your child you can still file charges. I don't know if it would be a felony though I believe that depends on the dollar amount stolen

stealling is stealling no mattuer, who it is, an to get to you question, yes they can,,, if you call them, they will make a report, an then ask you both if you want tp press charges,,, the thing is ,untill some one step up, an have him put in jail, he going to get kill,an to be honest you man think, he helpping him, get a way with it, but point out to you man, if the boy not stot, he be going to a funnel soon,

Baby Mya due 2/14/2009
Yes it is a felony. My exboyfriend that lived with me stole two of my guns and a saxophone, and I filed a police report. They were able to locate one of the guns and the horn, and they are now charging him with felony theft. If you make out a police report and they can prove he did it. For example finding pawn tickets in his name with the items on there, then they can charge him and prosecute him for these things. It doesnt matter who he stole from, he broke the law.

it is stealing but im not sure how the police would handle that.. you dont mention how old the guy is. you should still file a police report to protect yourself ...

i wish you the best...i had same problem with a sister... she is not on the streets .. doing drugs..and living out of her car. she lost her son .. etc..

stealing is stealing..... call the police yourself.

No, your husband is wrong. This was TWO felonies---breaking and entering + theft....if the earrings were expensive, it might even have been GRAND theft. It sounds like your husband is in denial about his son's problems, too. That's not healthy; I suggest you talk to a counselor about what to do from here.

Yes! File charges on that boy! Let the police deal with him rather than you kill him and go to jail for murder.

Question 1
It's a crime, but your husband probably doesn't want to get his son in any more trouble. He needs the money a lot more than you do. Just hope he spends it on rent and not drugs. You should track him down and try to get him some help. Maybe he was in danger and owed someone money? I don't exactly know the situation. He could be a bad kid, or maybe not? Good luck.

it could be a felony depending on the total money value involved you should file a police report
his dad is the reason he cant get help he is trying to cover up for what he has done

david w
Depending on where u live, anything over i think $600 is a felony.

you need to file a report and he needs to own up to the crime. call the police now!!!

yes it is absoulutley still a felony family or not.

put his behind in the slammer, teach him a lesson and get him clean simultaneously.

Your Husband is wrong, go file a report.
Whether the cops actually do anything about it depends on how lazy they are *shrugs*...but you'll need a police report for the insurance claim anyway.

Yes of course.
Stealing is stealing
You husband just doesnt want to turn his own son in

Where are you? In the State of Indiana that is definitely a Felony and relationship doesn't matter.

Yes, they can, but you must press charges. Your husband does not want to.

Sounds like some jailtime might be great for him. Yes it is a felony even if it's family. You can and should press charges so the police start a record of him. Otherwise, it's like it never happened and he's free to keep doing this.

Well, make sure your %100 percent sure it's him,
listen, if anyone steals from you thats a felony!
Though it might seem a little tough, it's good in that
he'll learn not to do it again!

I think you can still press charges - stealing is stealing.

Yes, you can have arrested by filing a warrant. He does not have the right to take items without permission.

TMLeaf Fan
Theft is theft...no matter who commits the theft.

depends on the value, sounds like a felony to me.

Yes, it is a felony and you can press charges. Sometimes the best thing for that kind of kid is tough love. I'd turn him in and let him face the consequences. If he is stealing now from you, he is only going to get worse.


latonya alston
how can you press charges against family members that stole money from out your household while you were gone and aren't willing to pay the money back, and stole large qualities of legal medicine .

Sharon Cunningham
My mother filed petitions with the courts to put me into a mental institution twice in the last year and a half. Both times I was cleared totally and sent home. Both times my gun was taken from me and not returned. The last time my mother took my gun and didn't tell me until I asked for it. Is this a felony? She's the one with a long history of mental illness. She went through my entire bedroom while I was in the mental institution for 6 days being evaluated. I'm missing clothes, gun, and other person items. I'm an adult but do to my finances, I'm forced to live with her. I'm in the process of seeking an attorney. Any advice? I'm in the state of Georgia......404-268-6408

My brother was my payee at the time I'm disabled so he would handle all mt money 💵 well I decided to buy a motorcycle so I didn't pay rent for two months I went homeless to fix my motorcycle andpay a fine well the two months I went homeless..my brother still my payee he steals my money I don't know what to do in more heartbroken then anything in just tired of walking that was why I bought my motorcycle.idont know what to do I fill now like he's laughing at me cause nothing has happen to him and I fill like my mom rewarded him with the master bedroom..luke ya keep stealing family money..what the hell are these people thinking ...my family's laughing at me what do I do

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