Can I charge my wife with theft if she sold something of mine without my permission? 33 Answers as of July 17, 2013

She sold my electric bass.

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Edward  D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law
Edward D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law | Edward D. Dowling IV
I would need further information to answer. You could talk to a prosecuting attorney to see if they would file charges.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 9/9/2012
Steven Alpers | Steven Alpers
If it is yours alone, separate property, it is possible. However, police would probably tell you this is a civil matter. If you do file expect her to become your ex-wife.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/5/2012
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
If this was personal property belonging to you alone and not community property then report it to the police.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/4/2012
Law Office of Richard Southard
Law Office of Richard Southard | Richard C Southard
It sounds more like a civil issue than a criminal one. While you can file a complaint against her with the police, they may choose not to arrest her depending on the rest of the facts.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 9/3/2012
Law Offices of Matthew M. Friedrich, PLLC | Matthew M. Friedrich
Technically, individuals do not charge others with crimes. You would report a suspected crime to the police and, in most cases, they would decide if charges should be presented to a prosecutor for the authorization of a complaint and warrant against the suspect. That said, you may want to consider making a police report if you think you are the victim of a crime.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 9/3/2012
    Law Office of Richard Williams
    Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
    Sure! Better divorce her first.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/31/2012
    Law Office of Michael E. Dailey
    Law Office of Michael E. Dailey | Michael E. Dailey
    Nope. While you are married its probably going to come under the heading of marital property and no charge will result. If she sold it to buy food or pay the utilities, you need a job more than a new bass. If she sold it to buy drugs, you need a new bass and a new wife.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/31/2012
    Natty Shafer Law
    Natty Shafer Law | Nathaniel Shafer
    Probably not. If you are legally married, then she has legal ownership in the electric bass, too. Unless you are separated and their is some sort of court order preventing her from selling anything, she can't be charged criminally.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 8/31/2012
    Dennis P. Mikko Attorney at Law | Dennis P. Mikko
    You could make a police report. It would be up to the prosecuting attorney whether any charges were brought.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    R. Jason de Groot, P.A
    R. Jason de Groot, P.A | R. Jason de Groot
    She could be prosecuted not only for theft, but also for dealing in stolen property. I would suggest that you speak with her about this as opposed to reporting it to the police. Dealing in stolen property is a very serious crime, and it will cost many thousands of dollars to defend.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Law Offices of Mark L. Smith
    Law Offices of Mark L. Smith | Mark L. Smith
    Well yes you can sue her but it appears there is a lot more going on than just the sale of the electric bass.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    Sure, if you can convince the police to take the report, and the DA to file. I wouldn't hold my breath.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Law Office of Jared C. Winter
    Law Office of Jared C. Winter | Jared C. Winter
    No. You can't charge anyone with anything unless you are a district attorney. If it's that big of a deal to you, call the police. But why would you want to invite the government (i.e., law enforcement, judges, prosecutors, etc.) into your personal lives to solve such a simple problem?
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Nope, not unless you happen to be the Distrct Attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Michael Breczinski
    Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
    Yes but this could end your marriage.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    The Law Offices of Stephen L. Richards | Stephen L. Richards
    No. All of your property is jointly owned. You would need to divorce her.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Lee Law Group | Ernest Lee
    Yes, if it wasn't community property, (in California), in which case of it was hers, so you'd have to charge her with stealing of the bass. Hey, find a good divorce lawyer also.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Law Offices of John Carney
    Law Offices of John Carney | John Carney
    Even in a community property state like California a wife cannot sell a husband's personal property. In New York State a husband can sue his wife or have her arrested, but then he may have to pay the legal fees. If it is a cheap Fender Squire Bass worth $100 it would not be a good idea to fight over it. If it is an expensive guitar and she sold it or pawned it you may be able to get it back from the pawn shop as it was stolen. You have to decide if you want to stay with a woman who is a thief and what you love more, your axe or your wife.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    Did you buy it after you got married? If so her interest is the same as yours. It is community property.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    No. Only a prosecutor my press charges for a crime. In the case of spouses, it is extremely unlikely and would likely be considered a civil matter since each party to a marriage has a presumptive marital interest in all assets.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Palumbo and Kosofsky
    Palumbo and Kosofsky | Michael Palumbo
    You clearly need a divorce lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/17/2013
    MatthewR. Schutz, Esq | Matthew R. Schutz
    Yes.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 5/22/2013
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S.
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
    Probably not. If you are a marital community, the assets of the marriage are presumed to belong to the marital community. Doubtful you will ever find a prosecutor to prosecute this one. Further, if you are willing to charge your wife with theft, maybe you should think about ending the marriage. By doing so, you will be able to end the possibility that she might sell something else of yours in the future.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Law Offices of Scott G. Hilderman
    Law Offices of Scott G. Hilderman | Scott G. Hilderman
    You can file a complaint with local law enforcement. It is unlikely they will prosecute however.
    Answer Applies to: Montana
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser | Phillip L. Weiser
    You can make a police report and they will forward it to the prosecutor. I don't know if they will charge it, you can speak to them about your desire to prosecute.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Lawrence Lewis
    Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
    Yes. After she is arrested, will you be bonding her out of jail? Will you be divorcing her immediately after she is released from jail, or will you wait for two years without sex (you will not expect sex from the person that you had arrested?), and then complain that she abandoned the marriage, AFTER you were the one who got her arrested.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    That's a tough question. IF you owned the bass before the marriage, it is separate property and in theory you could. However, if any funds were used to maintain it during the marriage, the picture is less clear. But why would you want to see your wife prosecuted? You're libel to end up in divorce court.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    You will probably have a very hard time getting your county prosecutor to bring a prosecution unless she is your ex-wife and you were awarded the property in at divorce judgment. Sounds like you marriage is at an end, I would suggest you see and attorney before more of your property disappears and things escalate.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Myles Hahn III Attorney at Law | Myles Hahn III
    Do you enjoy marriage?
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 6/13/2013
    Rhoades & Miller, LLP
    Rhoades & Miller, LLP | M. Jason Rhoades
    A spouse cannot be convicted of theft of the other spouse's property in Georgia.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Connell-Savela
    Connell-Savela | Jason Savela
    Seems a little over the top, huh? But, likely yeah especially if you owned it prior to marriage.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer | Cynthia Henley
    Not likely the police would accept charges unless you were already separated at the time. And, if it was acquired during the marriage (but not as a gift to you), then it is community property and she had as much legal right to it as you do.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/30/2012
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly | Brendan M. Kelly
    You could but not likely to go any where.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 8/30/2012
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