Shoplifting may sound like a simple child’s crime, but in fact it holds very severe consequences. New Jersey has some of the strictest laws regarding this offense; while other states may only penalize with fines, offenders in the garden state face potential jail time. Maybe your actual intention was to shoplift, but maybe it was a simple honest mistake.
Whatever the reason, you may be subject to very complicated consequences after the initial charge. A court date requiring you to appear for your trial is only the beginning. You may think pleading guilty might be the easiest way to end the problem, but that’s not true. A conviction for shoplifting is a very serious matter, especially in New Jersey. The state imposes harsh punishments for those caught committing the crime.
The charges vary according to the value of what it is you were caught stealing. If the value was under $200, the punishment can come with a maximum 6 months in jail. The offense becomes greater with the increase in value; shoplifting something between $200 to 500 is considered a felony and has a maximum 18-month jail sentence. In addition to these hefty fines, the merchant from whom you stole can file a civil lawsuit against you in order to gain restitution. If convicted, you may also face mandatory community service. A simple unfortunate decision to shoplift can come with consequences that can negatively affect your life.
Mark A. Schneider has the experience you need to fight against your shoplift charge and may be able to help you avoid the associated criminal charge. A conviction for shoplifting can ultimately affect your current and future employment opportunities. If you have been charged with this offense, call Mark A. Schneider today at (609) 242-9337.