Unlawful Use of Means of Transportation prohibits what is generally known as joyriding. The offense is defined by A.R.S. § 13-1803(A), which states that a person commits unlawful use of a means of transportation if, without intent to permanently deprive, the person either:
Knowingly taking unauthorized control over another person’s vehicle is a class 5 felony. For purposes of this offense, “control” has been defined as control over the vehicle while it is being used as a means of transportation. Thus, evidence that a defendant merely made unauthorized entry into a vehicle is insufficient to prove a violation of A.R.S. § 13-1803(A)(1).
Meanwhile, knowingly riding or being physically located in a stolen vehicle, or one that is under the unauthorized control of another, is a class 6 felony. While a class 6 felony is a slightly reduced offense, it can possibly result harsh penalties including jail or prison time. Even though this is the lowest felony offense, however, still a very serious allegation that should be taken very seriously.
While not as serious as Theft of a Means of Transportation, Unlawful Use of a Means of Transportation can still result in a permanent felony conviction, probation, jail or even prison. If you have been investigated for, arrested for, or charged with Unlawful Use of a Means of Transportation, you need an experienced Phoenix or Chandler criminal defense attorney to protect your rights. Contact Stone Rose Law online or by calling (480) 498-8998 now for a free consultation.