Stealing often causes more concern to parents because it may happen outside the home and may affect other people. During the school years, stealing may be a sign of a problem, but it may also be a result of peer pressure and the need for the child to fit in. It is important to look at the whole situation. Children under the age of 3 take things because they do not understand fully the difference between what is "mine" and what is not. They then may become possessive of their things and protect them. They do not steal with bad intentions. Children between the ages of 3 and 7 begin to respect things that belong to others. However, this age group will trade property without regard to value if something else is wanted. The respect for property continues in the school-aged child. By the time the child is 9, the child should respect the possessions of others and understand that stealing is wrong. Children in this age group may continue to steal because of several factors, including the following:
The Theft Act of 1927 consolidated a variety of common law crimes into theft. The state now distinguishes between two types of theft, grand theft and petty theft.  Grand theft generally consists of the theft of something of value over $950 (it can be money, labor or property but is lower with respect to various specified property),  while petty theft is the default category for all other thefts.  Grand theft is punishable by up to a year in jail or prison, and may be charged (depending upon the circumstances) as a misdemeanor or felony ,  while petty theft is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine or imprisonment not exceeding six months in jail or both.  As for the older crimes of embezzlement , larceny , and stealing , any preexisting references to them now mean theft instead.