Single Larceny Doctrine Law and Legal Definition

Single larceny doctrine is a principle of criminal law that taking of different items of property belonging to either the same or different owners at the same time and place constitutes one act of larceny if the theft is part of one larcenous plan.

For example in State v. Klasner, 19 N.M. 474, 478, 145 P. 679, 680 (1914) it was held that taking nineteen cattle on same day from one area but belonging to different individuals constituted one larceny as a matter of law; State v. Allen, 59 N.M. 139, 140-41, 280 P.2d 298, 299 (1955). Subsequently the doctrine was applied to embezzlement, another form of larceny. The intent of the thief determines the number of occurrences.

Single larceny doctrine is also known as single-criminal-intent doctrine or single-impulse plan.