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Ward K Johnson Law

Ward K Johnson Law

Grand Forks When is Shoplifting Considered Petty Theft?

In the modern age of consumption, our malls, brick-and-mortar stores, and retail outlets tend to see crowds of people walking in and out every day. And in today’s times, when people are struggling to find employment with the falling state of the economy, there has been an increase in cases of shoplifting. Sometimes, one might even shoplift without meaning to. Our Petty Theft Lawyers Grand Forks ND at Ward K Johnson offer services to people who have been served with a petty theft shoplifting charge. We know that sometimes mistakes happen, and we are here to help you build the best defense for yourself.

The Levels of Shoplifting

Shoplifting refers to the taking of goods without any intention of paying for them. On the surface, shoplifting may not seem to be that big a deal. It conjures the image of taking a small candy bar or lip balm stick from the convenience aisle of the store that might go virtually unnoticed. However, our Petty Theft Law Firm Grand Forks ND has found that shoplifting charges filed range from small goods to big-ticket items. The defense that we will ultimately build depends on the level of shoplifting that is being considered.

Grand Theft- This is probably the highest level shoplifting offense that you could be charged with. A shoplifting charge is generally considered to be grand theft if the dollar value of the stolen item/s is very high. But, this also depends on your prior criminal history, if you have one, and the circumstances of the crime. If your criminal history is extremely dotted, the likelihood of being served a grand theft charge is high. 

Infarctions- Infarctions are of a smaller level than grand thefts. This is usually judged case by case. Here again, the circumstances of the theft and your past convictions are considered. In most cases, you will be able to get off with probation or a small fine. You might even get your charge lowered to petty theft. But, you should make sure that you have experienced Petty Theft Lawyers Grand Forks ND like ours, who are proficient at creating plausible defenses against the charges of intent.

Misdemeanor Petty Theft- A petty theft charge for shoplifting is the lowest charge you could face. A shoplifting charge is a petty theft misdemeanor if the value of items taken is very low. The word ‘petty’ might lead to some misconceptions about the offense. Yes, it is the lowest charge you may face in a court of law. But, no it is not trivial. A petty theft conviction is a serious criminal offense and goes on your criminal record. Our Petty Theft Law Firm Grand Forks ND can try to help you get your case dismissed by building a strong defense, and you can avoid the negative effects of having a mark on your record.

The Penalties for Shoplifting

There are many outcomes you could face for shoplifting, even if it is a case of petty theft. You may be charged with fines, a prison sentence, a permanent blot on your criminal record, and subsequently, a damaged reputation during employment. The severity of the penalty you receive will be based on the value of the stolen goods, whether there is the intent behind the crime, your past record, and the method of theft. The Petty Theft Lawyers Grand Forks ND at Ward K Johnson pay close attention to all these details to mount a good defense in your petty theft case.

Shoplifting convictions can damage your reputation and life. In order to give yourself the best chance of reducing or dismissing your sentence, you should contact our Petty Theft Law Firm Grand Forks ND for expert guidance at the earliest.

This article is intended for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for legal advice.