Is there any chance that I could fight retail theft based on these circumstances? 13 Answers as of April 23, 2013I was shopping at a Family Dollar store and had my hands full so I placed three small chocolate eggs in my front hoodie pocket. When I got to the cash register I forgot that they were there and the cashier rung up the items I was purchasing. As she was ringing up my items she asked me about the eggs in my pocket and I told her I forgot they were there, took them out, and told her I wanted to pay for them and she said , "No, I'm calling the police." I didn't leave the register or even finish paying for my order but was charged with retail theft.
LeadfootSpeedingTicket.com | Andrea Storey Rogers
If you don't fight it, you will be convicted of shoplifting, which is a misdemeanor, and the conviction will stay on your criminal record forever. It can never be expunged (removed) from your criminal record. If you hire an attorney to represent you, the attorney can very likely negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor to have the charge reduced to a lesser offense and keep you from having a conviction for shoplifting on your permanent record. Depending on which court this is in, you may be able to plead guilty to "Littering" and pay a fine and court costs, but you probably won't have to appear in court.
Answer Applies to: Missouri
Timothy J. Thill P.C. | Timothy J. Thill
It would not hurt for you to fight the charges. If you had not exited the store, or passed the last point of purchase, you cannot be charged with retail theft. You admitted you had the eggs and offered to pay for them, at the point of purchase, the cash register, so you have a good chance of beating the case.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
William L. Welch, III Attorney | William L. Welch, III
An attorney can assist you with evaluating the prosecution's case, any defenses that you might have, and any plea offer that might be made, so that you can decide whether to plea bargain or go to trial. If you were to be found guilty, then an attorney can assist you with presenting mitigation, allocution, and a recommendation for a more lenient sentence. and a recommendation for a more lenient sentence.
Answer Applies to: Maryland
Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
Based upon your facts as you have stated, the fact that you were at the register, had not completed your transaction, and had not yet left the store without paying, would support the argument that no crime had been committed. If the facts are as you say they are, I find it surprising that you were charged.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law | Charles M. Schiff
Yes, the facts you relate could surely be used to fight the charge. The state is obligated to prove that you "intended" to take the items without paying for them. Your facts would cast doubt on your having the requisite intent.
Answer Applies to: Minnesota