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Perth Amboy Shoplifting Lawyer
A shoplifting offense arises in Perth Amboy New Jersey when someone takes or attempts to take merchandise from a store or merchant without paying for it. The theft can involve any retail item, fore example, electronics, groceries, clothes and jewelry.
The penalties imposed for a Perth Amboy shoplifting charge include significant fines, community service, restitution to the merchant or store owner and even the possibility of incarceration. In addition, an individual is branded with a criminal record that cannot be removed for years if they are convicted of shoplifting.
The bottom line is that the consequences of a shoplifting conviction can be extremely undesirable and ruinous to your future. It is, therefore, imperative that you hire an experienced Perth Amboy Criminal lawyer to help you resolve the charge in the best possible way. An attorney with experience defending shoplifting charges in Perth Amboy is certainly going to provide you with the opportunity you need.
The attorneys at our firm, the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, are savvy criminal litigators that have been handling shoplifting cases as both prosecutors and from the defense for over 100 years combined. There is no doubt that we possess the attributes required in order to fully protect your interests in Perth Amboy Municipal Court or the Middlesex County Superior Court. Call our East Brunswick Office at 732-227-1200 to speak to one of our lawyers in a free consultation.
Shoplifting Charge in Perth Amboy New Jersey
The New Jersey shoplifting statute, N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11, makes it a crime to knowingly or purposely deprive or attempt to deprive a merchant or retail establishment of merchandise without paying for it. Under 2C:20-11, shoplifting will be charged as either a disorderly person offense (a misdemeanor) that is heard in Perth Amboy Municipal Court or as an indictable offense (a felony) that is dealt with at the county courthouse.
Shoplifting involving merchandise valued at less than $200 will be graded as a disorderly persons offense. If the merchandise is valued at $200 or more, the charge will be graded as an indictable offense, with the severity of the charge and the punishment you will face if convicted increasing with the value of the items taken. Shoplifting merchandise with a value of at least $200 but less than $500 is a fourth degree crime punishable by a fine of up to $10,000 and up to 18 months in prison. It is a third degree crime to steal at least $500 but less than $75,000. The penalties for third degree shoplifting include a fine of up to $15,000 and up to 5 years in prison. Theft of $75,000 or more is a second degree crime that carries penalties that include a $150,000 fine and 5-10 years in prison.
Under N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11, an individual commits shoplifting if they: (1) take possession or carry away merchandise for the purpose of depriving a merchant or retail establishment of merchandise without paying for it; (2) conceals merchandise; (3) alters or transfers price tags; (4) changes the box or packaging of merchandise to deprive the merchant of the true value of the goods; (5) under-ring merchandise at a register; or (6) remove a shopping cart from the merchant’s property.
If you knowingly and purposely engaged in shoplifting and were caught, you are just as entitled to a defense as anyone else. You may be a good person who simply had a temporary lapse in judgment and who needs to be given a break.
Nevertheless, fighting a shoplifting charge when you knowingly and purposely took the merchandise without paying for it will be challenging. This is especially true if there is video surveillance or witnesses to the offense, or if you are found in possession of the merchandise.
Still, there may be available defenses that an experienced shoplifting attorney can identify and use to get your charge dismissed or, at the very least, minimize the penalties you will face if convicted.
On the other hand, if you inadvertently walked out if a store without paying for something, you are not guilty of shoplifting because you did not have the criminal intent to steal. But, that doesn’t mean that you can’t be charged with shoplifting, and if you are detected, you most likely will.
This means that you may be arrested and be required to go through the criminal justice process. What’s more, even if the charge is eventually dismissed, you will still have been punished by the long, expensive, and emotional court process. Our defense attorneys have helped many clients who have found themselves in this exact situation.
Perth Amboy Shoplifting Attorney
The defense lawyers at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have represented thousands of clients in courts throughout New Jersey. We have extensive experience defending shoplifting cases and our attorneys will go through every bit of evidence to come up with a strategy to successfully defend your Perth Amboy shoplifting charge. Call us at 732–227–1200 to arrange a free consultation with an attorney. A lawyer on our team is available 24/7 to help you.