Prosecutors have the leeway to prove a theft occurred in multiple ways. One is to show a knowing use of deception to gain unauthorized control over the property of another with the intent to deprive the owner of the property. The law provides multiple examples of what constitutes deception.
- creating an untrue impression
- failing to correct a misunderstanding
- preventing another from obtaining information to correct a false impression
All of these can constitute deceptions. The law treats certain verbal conduct, such as boasting, or puffery in a commercial context differently. These statements that typically accompany the sale of goods do not constitute deception. Obviously, these cases are highly fact-dependent. Some statements made in a commercial context may amount to actionable fraud.
-This Article was updated by Eric Kirk on 1/23/20.