Call us today at 201-996-0056 for a free consultation with an attorney with more than 30 years of experience.
Shoplifting and Petty Theft
You may be asking yourself why you need a defense lawyer for a
"minor" shoplifting offense. It's simple, really: hiring a good defense lawyer
who knows the shoplifting laws in New Jersey, who knows and has a
working relationship with the local Prosecutors, is critical to protect your legal
rights, and your best chance to beat the charges or walk away with a minimal penalty.
Whether you've already been arrested, or you have received a notice
to appear a Municipal or in the Superior Court, I can help you
work through your case to get the best possible outcome. Call us today at
201-996-0056 for a free consultation with an attorney with more than 29 years
of experience in Court defending these cases!
This is important because a shoplifting charge can have serious legal
consequences if not dealt with properly, and any criminal conviction
on your record can be damaging to your future. (We also offer the service of expunging or
sealing the record of your arrest so it may no longer be a public record. Please see our heading
entitled criminal expungements.)
Our office has successfully defended many individuals wrongfully
arrested for petty theft. We can help you to avoid serving
time in the County Jail and assist in clearing your record. Call us today at 201-996-0056 for a
free consultation with an attorney with more than 29 years of experience in Court defending these
WHAT IS SHOPLIFTING AND HOW CAN I FIGHT THE CHARGES EVEN IF I AM GUILTY?
Shoplifting or petty theft is a common crime that occurs when
someone steals merchandise offered for sale from a retail store.
The offense can be either a felony or misdemeanor depending upon the
value of the item taken and whether the person has prior convictions. You face time in jail if
convicted and there is a mandatory jail sentence if it is your second conviction.
To be convicted of shoplifting, one must "intend" to permanently
deprive the merchant of the value of the merchandise. Individuals
accused of shoplifting in New Jersey are often confused about the procedures for lawfully
detaining someone suspected of theft from a store. What are the rights of a person accused? Is
what the store security guard did legal? How much force
can be used to detain someone who is believed to have stolen
merchandise? Does the accused need to hire a Criminal Defense Lawyer? Can I file suit against
the store? Call us today at 201-996-0056 for a free consultation with an attorney with more than
29 years of experience in Court defending these cases!
THERE ARE DEFENSES TO THIS CRIME!!!!
The store security guard must generally see a shoplifter enter the
store or approach a display and see that the customer does not have
any merchandise in their hand or that they haven’t retrieved an item
from their own purse, bag, or pocket. This step prevents a common
mistake that occurs when a customer brings an item back to the
store for a return and does not check in at the return desk first. If
security detains someone after seeing them replace their own
merchandise into their pocket or bag, the store could be subject to a
false theft arrest claim even though it is a seemingly honest mistake.
Many false arrest claims are filed by attorneys because the store
missed this important, but basic, first step
Secondly, the security employee must see the suspected shoplifter
select the merchandise. Burbank Store employees can misunderstand
when they see a customer innocently put an item into their pocket or
purse and not realize that the customer had brought the item into the
store with them for comparison purposes. If the employee can
positively and honestly state that they saw the shoplifter remove
store merchandise from the display prior to concealing it, then they
may have a strong foundation for proof of shoplifting.
Furthermore, the employee must see the shoplifter conceal, carry
away, or convert the merchandise. This includes concealment in
bags, baby strollers, or on a person. Shoplifting can occur by
wearing articles in plain view once the tags are removed. Shoplifting
can occur by conversion, for example, when consuming food prior
to being purchased. An exception to the observation rule is inside a
fitting room where observation is impossible. Once inside a fitting
room store merchandise can be concealed almost anywhere. The
important factor is to know what items go into the fitting room and
what items don't come out in plain view. The problem is, the fitting
room must be checked beforehand to see if it is clear of merchandise
and after the suspected person exits to see that the missing items
were not simply discarded.
Being arrested or ordered to appear in the Criminal Court on a
shoplifting charge is a difficult and humiliating experience. I sincerely
sympathize with you, and you need to know that there is a good
chance that I can help you. I have more than 29 years of experience in these
cases and I've been able to help many people get their charges
reduced or dismissed. Even with the most difficult cases, a good
shoplifting defense lawyer will make sure you get the minimum
penalty possible and avoid jail and immigration consequences.
Acting on your case quickly is important. You see, we have a lot
more legal options available the earlier we get on a case. Ideally, I
like to meet with my client shortly after they are arrested. We have
defended many of these cases, and frankly, we have seen a lot of
other lawyers make the mistake of not immediately challenging the
facts and circumstances of the case. Don't delay in speaking with a
attorney about your case. Early Intervention can be a big advantage.
Call us today at 201-996-0056 for a free consultation with an attorney with more than 30 years
of experience in Court defending these cases!
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