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Florida man facing theft charges after selling empty beer kegs

A Florida man is being charged with dealing in stolen property after selling four empty beer kegs to a Beverage Castle and attempting to sell eight more. He is also being held on charges of theft, burglary and aggravated assault on a police officer. The charges come shortly after his release from prison where he was serving time for charges of drug possession. Warrants for him had already been issued due to violation of probation.

After selling the empty beer kegs to the Beverage Castle, Polk County deputies claim that the 42-year-old man admitted to stealing the kegs from two local restaurants. When he returned to sell eight more empty beer kegs, he was taken into custody. He then explained to officers that he had obtained the eight kegs "from a friend". As the man attempted to flee the scene by car, he accidentally collided with a patrol car, resulting in the charge of aggravated assault on a police officer.

In the state of Florida, theft charges vary depending on the value of the property stolen. If the total value of the empty beer kegs turns out to be under $300, the man in this case could face charges of petty theft. If the value is over $300, he will face more serious charges of grand theft. Proving that the kegs were stolen from a place other than a home or dwelling will help to lessen his charges.

Because he was already on inmate release status and had warrants out for him, the man in this case will have a more complicated defense. He would be wise to contact a lawyer who specializes in theft and property crimes. A lawyer could help him to get his theft charges reduced and build a solid defense.

Source: Epoch Times, "'Beer Keg Thief' Caught in Tampa", Zachary Stieber, July 11, 2013

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