Important Tips on How to Defend Against a Shoplifting Charge

Important Tips on How to Defend Against a Shoplifting Charge

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If you are facing a shoplifting charge, it is important to understand the severity of the offense and the possible penalties. A conviction for shoplifting can result in jail time, probation, and a criminal record. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help you defend against a shoplifting charge by challenging the evidence against you and raising defenses to the charges. Now, let’s see everything you need to know about it.

What is Shoplifting?

Shoplifting is defined as the theft of merchandise from a retail store. In order to be convicted of shoplifting, the prosecutor must prove that you intended to permanently deprive the store of the merchandise. This can be difficult to prove, especially if you have no prior criminal history.

After these charges are pressed against you, it is important to consult with a competent criminal defense attorney. An experienced attorney will be able to evaluate the facts of your case and advise you of your best legal options.

The Process of Gathering Evidence for Your Case

It is important to start gathering evidence as soon as possible. This may include surveillance footage from the store, witness statements, receipts, or other documentation. An experienced criminal defense attorney will know how to obtain this evidence and use it to defend you against the charges.

Contact an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney

When a situation like this happens, you should immediately establish communication with an attorney. The experienced attorneys can help you defend against these charges and protect your rights

An experienced criminal defense attorney will be able to evaluate the facts of your case and advise you of your best legal options. Contact an experienced criminal defense attorney today for a free consultation. Naturally, this is not the only thing you should pay attention to.

What to Look for in an Attorney?

When you are looking for an attorney to represent you, it is important to find someone who has experience handling shoplifting cases in your jurisdiction. You should also look for an attorney who is familiar with the laws and procedures in your particular court system. Additionally, you should make sure that the attorney you choose is someone you feel comfortable communicating with and who you feel will be able to best advocate for your interests.

Experience with Shoplifting Cases

When you are looking for an attorney to represent you, it is important to find someone who has experience handling shoplifting cases in your jurisdiction. The experienced attorneys who handled countless shoplifting cases know how to effectively defend against these charges.

Communication and Comfort

It is important that you feel comfortable communicating with your attorney. This is someone who will be representing you in a court of law and it is important that you feel confident in their ability to advocate for your interests. When you meet with potential attorneys, take the time to ask them questions about their experience and practice to get a better sense of who they are and how they might handle your case.

Credibility and Trust

When you are facing criminal charges, it is important to find an attorney you can trust. Look for someone who is highly respected in the legal community and who has a strong track record of success. These are the attorneys who will be most likely to get you the best possible outcome in your case.

Education and Resources

It is important to find an attorney who is well-educated and has the resources necessary to handle your case. Look for someone who has gone to a top law school and who has experience handling similar cases. Additionally, you should make sure that the attorney you choose has access to the resources they need, such as private investigators and expert witnesses.

Success Rate

When you are looking for an attorney to represent you, be sure to ask about their success rate. You should also ask about the specific outcomes they have been able to achieve in similar cases. The more experience an attorney has, the better chance they will have of achieving a favorable outcome in your case.

The Importance of Hiring an Attorney

Consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. An experienced attorney will be able to evaluate the facts of your case and advise you of your best legal options. Additionally, an attorney can help you navigate the criminal justice system and ensure that your rights are protected. Contact an experienced criminal defense attorney today to discuss your case. 

Potential Consequences of a Shoplifting Conviction

A shoplifting conviction can result in a number of consequences, like:

Jail Time

Jail time is a possible consequence of a shoplifting conviction. The amount of time you may spend in jail will depend on the severity of the offense and your prior criminal history.

Probation

Probation is a possible consequence of a shoplifting conviction. Probation is a period of time during which you will be supervised by the court and will be required to comply with certain conditions.

Criminal Record

A shoplifting conviction will result in a criminal record. A criminal record can make it difficult to find employment, housing, and loans.

Fines

Fines are a possible consequence of a shoplifting conviction. The amount of the fine will depend on the severity of the offense.

Community Service

Community service is a possible consequence of a shoplifting conviction. Community service is typically required as part of probation.

What Should Your Defense be Based on?

Now, let’s see what are some of the commonest strategies to base your defense on in this case.

Intoxication

Intoxication can be used as a criminal defense in some jurisdictions if it can be shown that the defendant was so intoxicated at the time of the offense that they did not have the required mental state to commit the crime. This is known as the intoxication defense.

Necessity

The necessity defense may be available if it can be shown that the defendant committed the crime in order to prevent greater harm from occurring. For example, if a person steals food to prevent themselves from starving, they may be able to use the necessary defense.

Diminished Capacity

The diminished capacity defense may be available if it can be shown that the defendant did not have the mental capacity to form the required mental state to commit the crime. This defense is typically used in cases where the defendant suffers from a mental illness or disability.

Self-Defense

The self-defense defense may be available if it can be shown that the defendant used force in order to protect themselves from imminent harm. For example, if someone is being attacked and uses force to defend themselves, they may be able to use self-defense defense.

Consent

The consent defense may be available if it can be shown that the victim consented to the act which resulted in their injuries. For example, if two people get into a fight and one of them is injured, the other person may not be liable if it can be shown that the victim consented to the fight.

Claim of Ownership

The claim of ownership defense may be available if it can be shown that the defendant had a good faith belief that they were the rightful owner of the property. For example, if someone finds an item and attempts to return it to its rightful owner, they may have a defense if they are charged with theft.

Lack of Intent

The lack of intent defense may be available if it can be shown that the defendant did not intend to commit the crime. For example, if someone accidentally takes an item from a store without paying for it, they may have a defense if they are charged with shoplifting.

Entrapment

The entrapment defense may be available if it can be shown that the defendant was induced by law enforcement to commit the crime. For example, if an undercover police officer offers to sell drugs to someone and the person buys the drugs, they may have a defense if they are charged with drug possession.

What to Avoid?

There are some defenses that you should avoid if you have been charged with shoplifting.

Admitting Guilt

One of the worst things that you can do if you have been charged with shoplifting is to admit guilt. If you admit that you committed the crime, it will be very difficult for your attorney to mount a defense on your behalf.

Fleeing the Scene

Another thing to avoid if you have been charged with shoplifting is fleeing the scene of the crime. If you are caught fleeing, it will be difficult for your attorney to argue that you did not commit the crime.

Destroying Evidence

Do not destroy any evidence that may be used against you. If you destroy evidence, it will be difficult for your attorney to mount a defense on your behalf.

In Conclusion

If you face this sort of charge, it is necessary to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can review the facts of your case and advise you of your legal options. Additionally, an attorney can help you navigate the criminal justice system and ensure that your rights are protected.

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