The theft of a cell phone is just like any other theft.
In the United States, the exact definition of the various theft crimes is usually a matter of state law, as is the penalty.
Is it a felony to steal a phone?
Under current law, a person convicted of stealing something with a value of more than $250 — a new iPhone 6 retails for at least $549, by way of example — is guilty of a felony, and subject to up to five years in state prison, or up to two years in jail and a fine of up to $25,000.
How much do you have to steal to go to jail?
The stolen property’s value is often what determines if the crime is a felony or misdemeanor. In order to be a felony theft, the value of the property must exceed a minimum amount established by state law, typically between $500 and $1,000.
Can you press charges for theft?
Petty theft generally is a misdemeanor offense. The theft of property with a value of $950 or more constitutes grand theft under California law. Grand theft can result in a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the circumstances.
Can you go to jail for stealing hours?
Jail is the penalty upon conviction of any crime. In California, if convicted of any misdemeanor, you potentially face up to 12 months in jail, plus fines.