Shop Lifting Charges in New York

In New York, a high percentage of criminal cases involve shoplifting. This can be related to the fact that this city is the retail capital of the world. However, although shoplifting charges seem to be minor, it’s still a form of criminal charge that should be taken seriously. There are also instances where some security officers falsely accuse an innocent shopper for personal gain, this is where the help of a reliable defense attorney becomes essential.

That said, we have gathered some of the important points that consumers should be aware of.

Let’s start with one of the shoplifting charges known as “petit larceny.” This refers to the theft of property with a value below $1000. Considering the fact that it’s a “Class A” misdemeanor, perpetrators could face a year of imprisonment.

A person charged with petit larceny in New York faces the following

Arrest
Those arrested for petit larceny are usually kept in custody before arraignment in criminal court. Usually, the process for this takes 18-24 hours. There are cases where the police officer could release the suspect a few hours after their arrest, with the desk appearance ticket. This ticket contains information, such as when they should appear in court, and the arraignment usually happens a few weeks after the offense.

Effects
Fortunately, a lot of first-time offenders aren’t subject to probation, but the shoplifting charges do leave a permanent criminal record that stigmatizes the offenders, and although it’s not as serious as other offenses, it can negatively affect the personal life of a person. The lack of an expungement statue in New York City doesn’t make the situation any less better. Thus, a petit larceny charge could complicate the licensing process, immigration, employment, and even background checks.

Civil Consequences
Offenders are required to pay the cost of the item/s they were accused of stealing. In New York, the attorneys of the concerned merchants could send a civil demand letter, which demands payment for both the stolen item, together with the monetary penalties and attorney fees.

These things just show how this criminal offense can have serious consequences, despite the fact that they’re just misdemeanor offenses. Thus, anyone who has been accused of shoplifting should consult an experienced lawyer right away.

The attorney would be the one to review the complaint and see if there’s sufficient ground to charge the person with this offense. The prosecution would require a sworn statement that details the first-hand description of the criminal offense and the value of the stolen goods. Wherein, for shoplifting charges, if the information is not received quickly, there’s a huge possibility that the case would be dismissed.

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