Ryan Joseph Pumar, 26, maintains that he was only trying to help his brother when he was caught with a bike that wasn’t his. He’s now facing charges for the theft.
Thief Trying to Help Brother by Stealing Bike
According to an eye-witness identified as Julie, she saw Pumar reaching for the door handle of her friend’s apartment when she asked him “Do you live here?”
The incident happened just before sunrise, the morning of September 13.
According to Julie, the man, later identified as Pumar, answered “Yes” and she said “Where?” and he said “Down by the pool.”
Julie said “No you don’t and I know what you’re doing and get out of here.”
Pumar, dressed in black gloves and a baseball hat and a backpack then walked away.
Adam Young, a Carlsbad police officer alleges that later that same morning he was called to a scuffle at a nearby gated community where two men in a truck were attempting to stop a man, allegedly Pumar’s brother Romeo Nigg, who was riding one bike while pushing along a second bike by the handlebars. Nigg was able to escape. There is surveillance video showing Nigg was following Pumar, about 50 yards behind.
Pumar, who was on trial for his involvement in the theft, told Young at the time that he was glad the guy in the truck got his bike back, according to his testimony.
Pumar alleges the bike was taken by his brother Romeo Nigg, but that he was trying to help him escape. Pumar maintains that the bike was too nice for his brother to have and that he regretted trying to help his brother by hurrying the bike into the brush, before it was noticed.
The bike owner testified that he got he got his $2,000 bicycle back the same day he reported it stolen.
Judge William Wood noted during his hearing that Pumar was on parole for a prior, strike, robbery conviction at the time of the theft. The judge declined Pumar’s defense’s request to reduce two felony theft charges to misdemeanors. Pumar has ten previous criminal cases, dating back to 2010 when he was 18 years old.
Being Accused of Theft
If you have been arrested and charged with a theft crime, you might be interested to know exactly what this charge means.
Definition of a Theft Crime
A theft crime is a criminal act and is defined as taking the personal property or money of another without their permission. A theft crime can either be charged as a misdemeanor or felony.
Examples of Theft Crimes
Some common theft crimes include:
- Armed Robbery
- Armed Robbery with a weapon
- Vehicular Theft
- Money Laundering
- Credit Card Fraud
- Identity Theft
In California the Penal Code Sections 484 and 488 are two sections under which petty theft is handled and prosecuted, depending on the circumstances involved with the charges.
Grand Theft versus Petty Theft
Misdemeanor Known as a “Petty” Theft Crime
A misdemeanor theft crime is also known as “petty theft.” A petty theft is when the property or money taken is $400 or less. The punishment for a petty theft crime can include jail time of as much as six months, community service, counseling, significant fines, restitution to the victim or repayment to law enforcement for the cost of the investigation, and/or probation.
The offense of petty theft may also be used to change any future petty theft crimes as a felony, which is called “petty theft with a prior.”
Felony Known as a “Grand” Theft Crime
A felony theft crime is also known as “grand theft.” A grand theft is when the property or money taken is over $400. Punishment for grand theft includes prison time, restitution to the victim and the law enforcement agency, reimbursement for supervision costs, counseling, high court fines, and/or probation or parole.
Theft is the unlawful taking of somebody else’s property without their permission. What defines the difference between grand theft and petty theft is the value, type of property stolen, and method used. California Penal Code Section 487 PC covers grand theft while California Penal Code Sections 484 and 488 both cover petty theft.
Penal Code Section 484 – Petty Theft Violation
Penal Code Section 484 covers general theft violations which has many different degrees of theft. Violating this code is a criminal offense which includes extensive fees, probation, and jail time. To prove this type of theft the prosecutor has to prove not only that the person stole another person’s property, but they also have to prove it was without consent of the owner. The prosecutor must also prove the intent of the defendant was to permanently deprive the owner of the stolen property.
Penal Code Section 488 – Petty Theft Misdemeanor
Under Penal Code 488 petty theft involves the theft of property with a value of less than $950 and is charged as either an infraction or misdemeanor. An example of petty theft of this type is shoplifting. Even though it’s a misdemeanor, it’s still on the accused’s permanent record. The punishment of this type of petty theft includes a fine of up to $1,000, time in county jail of up to six months, or both.
Penal Code Section 487 – Grand Theft
Penal Code 487 covers grand theft. It is also the intentional stealing of another person’s property, but the amount must exceed the state’s statutory amount, which in California is $400. Grand theft also includes taking property by force or fear from another person, such as robbery using a firearm or knife, which could also carry the charge of assault with a deadly weapon.
Legal Process for Theft
Whenever somebody is accused of a crime, whether it’s fraud or theft, they have to go through a legal process involving court. The process involves various outcomes which can result in a court trial to determine whether you are guilty or innocent. Before a trial occurs, if it occurs, certain steps must be gone through.
General Process for Theft
Following is a general process courts follow, although some courts may have different names for the steps. Unless your criminal attorney advises you otherwise, you should be present for all these steps.
1. Arraignment. An arraignment is when you formally appear before a judge and told the charges filed against you. During the arraignment you’re asked to enter your plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest. You can change your plea later.
During the arraignment, the judge outlines any conditions you have to follow to avoid being taken into custody. In order to avoid being taken to jail, you may be required to post a bail or bond until your case is resolved. You have the option to object to any of the conditions the judge sets forth. Its best to have the assistance of a criminal attorney to guide you during this process.
This is where you’ll also get notices of future hearings, including dates for a pre-trial hearing and actual trial.
2. Pre-trial. Pre-trial hearings let the court monitor the case’s progress. During a pre-trial you and the court can resolve any issues that come up while your case is pending. Frequently at this step a case can be “continued” to permit both parties sufficient time to prepare their cases.
3. Motions. Depending on your case type and what determinations the court has already made, various legal motions are able to be brought before the court at this time.
4. Readiness. The “readiness hearing” is when both parties let the court know their “readiness” for trial. This step is scheduled anywhere from several days to several weeks before the beginning of trial. During this step your case can be either continued or resolved.
5. Trial. Although most cases are resolved beforehand, if your case goes to trial you can decide whether you want a trail by jury, where a jury decides your case, or a bench trial, where a judge will decide your case.
If you have been arrested and accused of theft, it’s imperative that you contact a criminal defense attorney such as Sevens Legal, APC. Contact Sevens Legal, APC, today for a free consultation.
Criminal Defense Attorneys
3555 4th Ave.
San Diego, CA 92103
Phone: (619) 297-2800