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What Is TBUT?

TBUT is a crime in Kentucky which is shorthand for Theft By Unlawful Taking.  If charged as TBUT > $500, it is a felony charge.  If TBUT < $500, it is a misdemeanor charge.  Often TBUT is the charge for shoplifting as well as cold check cases.  The statutory definition is as follows: KRS 514.030 - Theft by unlawful taking or disposition -- Penalties. (1) Except as otherwise provided in KRS 217.181, a person is guilty of theft by unlawful taking or disposition when he unlawfully: (a) Takes or exercises control over movable property of another with intent to deprive him thereof; or (b) Obtains immovable property of another or any interest therein with intent to benefit himself or another not entitled thereto. (2) Theft by unlawful taking or disposition is a Class A misdemeanor unless: (a) The property is a firearm (regardless of the value of the firearm), in which case it is a Class D felony; (b) The property is anhydrous ammonia (regardless of the value of the ammonia), in which case it is a Class D felony unless it is proven that the person violated this section with the intent to manufacture methamphetamine in violation of KRS 218A.1432, in which case it is a Class B felony for the first offense and a Class A felony for each subsequent offense; (c) The property is one (1) or more controlled substances valued collectively at less than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), in which case it is a Class D felony; (d) The value of the property is five hundred dollars ($500) or more but less than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), in which case it is a Class D felony; (e) The value of the property is ten thousand dollars ($10,000) or more but less than one million dollars ($1,000,000), in which case it is a Class C felony; (f) The value of the property is one million dollars ($1,000,000) or more but less than ten million dollars ($10,000,000), in which case it is a Class B felony; or (g) The value of the property is ten million dollars ($10,000,000) or more, in which case it is a Class B felony. (3) Any person convicted under subsection (2)(g) of this section shall not be released on probation or parole until he or she has served at least fifty percent (50%) of the sentence imposed, any statute to the contrary notwithstanding. As you can see, the felony charge may be enhanced based on the amount of theft.  Over $500 is a Class D Felony, Over $10,000 is a Class C Felony and Over $1,000,000 is a Class B Felony, with specific enhancements for mandatory prison time if over $10MM. If you have been charged with any TBUT, whether misdemeanor or felony, you need an attorney.  For representation in Boone, Campbell, Kenton and Gallatin Counties, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453.

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