Will I Go to Jail for Shoplifting?
Are you wondering: will I go to jail for shoplifting? Perhaps you have already been caught and you’re wondering what to expect. Or maybe you’re planning on stealing something from a store such as Walmart or Target and want to know what could happen to you.
What Is Shoplifting?
Shoplifting is the act of taking something worth value that belongs to a retail store or merchant without their consent. This type of case is often pursued by the company that has caught the person shoplifting. They are often aggressive with the pursuit of the case. The intent of shoplifting is to gain something valuable and deprive the merchant. Shoplifting charges occur daily in Louisiana. Let us talk about what is going to happen if you shoplift and are charged.
Shoplifting Charges in Louisiana
You may also hear shoplifting referred to as theft. It means the same thing. Taking something from a merchant or retailer without their consent or intent to pay. If you are guilty, you may see the following:
- If the goods that were stolen were less than one thousand dollars, you may serve up to six months in jail. You may also face a fine of one thousand dollars. In some cases, you may have to sit in jail and pay a fine.
- If you steal more than one thousand dollars of goods, then you can face up to two years in jail. You may also face a two thousand dollar fine. Again, in some cases, you may face both jail and a fine.
- Keep in mind that the merchant may sue you in civil court. This is where the person accused of shoplifting pays back the damage or value that was done. This value can be as low as fifty dollars or as high as four hundred and fifty dollars.
First Offense Shoplifting – Misdemeanor
There can be two offenses for shoplifting. This is a misdemeanor and felony. Misdemeanor offenses will have fewer sentences and less harsh punishments than a felony charge. The determining factor between misdemeanor offenses and felony offenses is the amount taken.
If you are arrested and then have a misdemeanor charge, you will get a citation. You may also get a complaint from the prosecution. However, both will hold a small or short sentence. Make sure that you are hiring a defense attorney before your court date to help ensure that you are getting the best possible outcome from a mistake that was made.
First Offense Shoplifting Consequences
As stated, those who commit shoplifting for the first time will be charged with up to six months in jail. This will happen in the county jail, and you could have a fine of up to one thousand dollars. You will see that the is not the punishment that hurts for first-time offenders. The biggest problem is in the future of the convicted.
It will have a negative impact on your life in the future. You may have problems becoming employed somewhere, getting scholarships, and even finding a somewhere to live. However, if you are hiring the proper defense team, you will be okay. You can usually get a misdemeanor shoplifting conviction out of court if you have a good defense attorney.
Second Offense Shoplifting Charge
When you have a shoplifting charge on your record, the second offense will be punished differently. The punishment will be more severe. If you are convicted of shoplifting for a subsequent time, then you can face six months in jail and fines. You may also see probation or types of suspensions.
Every charge that has a prior record will aggravate the newest charge. Your punishment will be harsher, and you will have higher punishments just because it is a second offense. Hiring a defense attorney will be beneficial if you are facing a second shoplifting charge.
Getting Shoplifting Expunged
If you hire a good defense attorney, the charges can be dropped or acquitted if you get them expunged. Once this is done, you can fill out an application. Do this directly after the charge has been dropped. You can file this application if you do not know if you qualify too.
You can also get the charge dropped off your record if you did serve the time and paid the fine. You can get the charge off your record if you have paid off your fine and have had six months after that time. You may also do this two years after serving your sentence and paying off your fines.
Wrapping Up: Will I Go To Jail For Shoplifting
To get the best results, contact the Barkemeyer Law Firm. One of the best defense attorneys in the area. He can help ensure that your shoplifting charge gets the least amount of attention possible when it comes to the jail and fines.
You should now have a better understanding to your question will I go to jail for shoplifting?