A fair share of people reading this that at some point in their life stole something. Most often it was nothing serious and nothing that adversely affected your future, you might have taken a candy from a checkout line. Whether you were caught or got away without any repercussions, you didn't have anything to face besides an embarrassing incident and your parents disapproval. When people grow too old to be satisfied with taking candy and decide to move on to more heavy duty theft, we have a range of shoplifting laws to discourage people from continuing that sort of behavior. If you have been charged with shoplifting of any value it's imperative you are aware of the types of penalties you may be facing.
In NJ, shoplifting is considered having occurred when items of any value are taken outside of the store without an intent to pay for them. Regardless of whether they're hidden in clothing or someone brazenly runs out with them. This also includes using a cheaper price tag or removing the item or items and placing them into a different container.
The law is not one size fits all, there will be variances in the severity depending on numerous factors. The biggest factor will be the worth of the item or items that have been taken. Obviously the higher the price point the more intense the penalty. For instance if items of a value over $75,000 are taken the state considers it a second degree crime with corresponding jail time of up to 5 years and the potential for $150,000 in fines.
Regardless of the price the store is allowed to seek compensation for their time and effort. This is manifested in a $150.00 charge that can be put towards their legal fees and court dues. This goes for the first time you're arrested for shoplifting or the 15th time. It may seem that having the first offense for shoplifting when the items are valued at under $200 be a maximum of 10 days in jail is getting off easy but the store will still be allowed to seek compensation.
Having a great attorney in your corner may be crucial for your future success. A knowledgeable attorney will be able to use their years of experience to negotiate with the court and the store to have the charges reduced or dropped altogether.
If you are seeking representation for a shoplifting charge call today for a free consultation 800-709-1131 or fill out a contact form on our website for a no-cost consultation.We hope to hear from you today!