Theft includes activities such as burglary, armed robbery, forgery, check theft, using a vehicle without authorization, false statements to a credit card agency, fraud, shoplifting and much more. The charges for theft can range from felony charges to misdemeanor depending on the value of the items stolen or damaged. For instance, if the value is a maximum of $1500 and below, the perpetrator mayl be charged with a misdemeanor. Here, he/she must pay a fine or do community service. In some cases, there might be jail time.
On the other hand, if the item stolen was of a larger value, the accused will get a felony charge which comes with prison time. During the court hearing, if there’s more than one offense on the record of the accused, it will affect the sentencing. It’s a common habit for thieves to have another offense on their record. Note that in some states, theft of any kind will be classified as a crime of moral turpitude. It refers to the act as unfavorable in the standards of justice, morals or honesty within that community.
If you are charged with a misdemeanor, there’s a permanent criminal record on your account forever. It might have a negative effect on your character legally, personally and with regards to your future employment opportunities. One of the most common types of theft includes shoplifting. It refers to the act of taking something deliberately from a business, retail store and much more. Note that, you can be charged with shoplifting even if you haven’t walked out of the store but have hidden the merchandize in your belongings or on your body.
With regard to shoplifting, each year, retail businesses lose as much as $10 billion worth of merchandise. These numbers are staggering and you have to pay for the price because these retail businesses increase their prices to recover the costs from shoplifting. Therefore, the courts in Suffolk County, NY do not take pity of anyone accused of shoplifting. Whether it’s you or your friend doing it, you should stop immediately because you can both be prosecuted for the offense and it would be unfair to the innocent person.
In conclusion, theft of any kind is highly frowned upon because you can land in a lot of trouble. It will affect you in a lot of negative ways as well as the people around you. That’s why the legal statutes are clear about it and harsh to prevent the habit. Most people commit these acts hoping they will get away with it but eventually they make a mistake and are caught. Therefore, the best way to avoid being on the wrong side of the law is to avoid stealing altogether.