Here's a statistical fact: every prosecutor thinks stealing is a crime. But it's not. The act of "theft" may be either civil or criminal. Both acts are immoral, both acts are unethical. And, our Florida Statutes provide remedies for both behaviors, but the problem is often deciding where to draw the line between a civil theft and a criminal theft. A civil theft provides a punishment of triple the damages incurred.
For a criminal theft, punishment increases (length of prison term, for example) depending upon the item stolen, and/or it's worth. For example, it's a third degree felony (Grand Theft, 3rd Degree) to steal something with a value over $300, but less than $20,000. Thefts over $20,000 become a second degree felony (Grand Theft 2nd Degree), and theft over $100,000 becomes a first degree felony. However, stealing a firearm that's worth $95 is still a third degree felony, as is stealing a fire extinguisher (and the list goes on, and on). Stealing something under $300 is usually a misdemeanor petit theft.
Section 812.014 of the Florida Statutes states that (1) a person commits theft if he or she knowingly obtains or uses, or endeavors to obtain or to use, the property of another with intent to, either temporarily or permanently: (a) deprive the other person of a right to the property or a benefit from the property, or (b) appropriate the property to his or her own use or to the use of any person not entitled to the use of the property. Got it? Good, now for a real life example of how this law plays out in court.