As you know, it is wrong to steal, no matter who it is you steal from. That being said, everyone makes mistakes, and if you are someone who made the mistake of shoplifting and got caught, you are most likely wondering about the legal consequences to come and whether our firm can help you fight them. Please continue reading and speak with our knowledgeable Mercer County theft lawyer to learn more about the consequences of shoplifting in New Jersey and how we can work to help you go on living a free, productive life. Here are some of the questions you may have:
What are the penalties for shoplifting in New Jersey?
To start, you should understand that in most cases, if you are allegedly caught stealing an item that is worth any less than $200, you will face a disorderly person’s offense, which is a misdemeanor. Though misdemeanor offenses are not as damaging as felonies, they will still stay on your record, and they may follow you for years to come. Our firm can work to prevent that from happening.
What is the legal process like after being charged with shoplifting?
Generally, shoplifting cases are heard in the local municipal court in the town in which the shoplifting occurred. In most cases, a first-offense shoplifting charge will encompass high fines, a lifetime ban from the store, and up to 6 months of jail time. You may even be sentenced to probation as well.
Furthermore, you should understand that the specific consequences you will face for shoplifting largely depend on the dollar amount of the merchandise stolen. The greater the value of the merchandise, the more severe the consequences you will face. In most cases, the penalties for shoplifting in New Jersey are as follows:
- Stolen property valued between $200-$500: This is a 4th-degree crime, for which you may spend up to 18 months in jail and face up to $10,000 in fines.
- Stolen property valued between $500-$75,000: This is a 3rd-degree crime, for which you may spend between 3-5 years in jail and face up to $15,000 in fines.
- Stolen property valued at more than $75,000: This is a 2nd-degree crime, for which you may spend between 5-10 years in jail and face up to $150,000 in fines.
No matter the circumstances of your crime, our firm is ready to help you today.