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Shoplifting Charges: Providing the Best Defense

Shoplifting ranks as one of the most commonly committed crimes in Suffolk County, NY. Annually, thousands of people on Long Island are accused of this common vice. In most cases, the value of goods stolen is under two hundred dollars. Once you are arrested for shoplifting, you may be found liable to pay a fine or sent to jail.

Although most people will be asked to pay a fine or sentenced to mandatory community service, the criminal record in itself impacts negatively on the accused party’s reputation. The resulting criminal record, and negative reputation, in most cases will have a negative effect on the accused person’s ability to secure employment.

Fortunately, there are many ways that accused parties with the right legal representation from a criminal defense attorney, who is experienced in handling theft crime cases, can legally have the charges downgraded or dropped once and for all. Read on to find out the common defenses legal experts turn to when representing their clients.

Prove it was Unintentional
It is true that some people actually take stuff from shopping outlets by mistake. Where it is proven that the shoplifting was by accident, the court may throw out the charges.

Clean Record
In most cases, an accused party with a clean record will find it easier to negotiate for a reduced sentence from the courts.

Illegal Arrest
For shoplifting charges to stick, the arrest must have been done by the book. First and foremost there must have been a case of shoplifting. This actually happens during the instance where the accused is caught trying to leave the store with stolen goods. Secondly, the arresting officer(s) must have followed the law to the letter when making the arrest. Where this is not the case, the charges may be thrown out.

Insufficient Proof
Video surveillance has become a common security measure in most outlets, and is therefore a common source of evidence in shoplifting cases. It’s worth mention that even with video evidence; a witness has to be called upon to testify that the tape is genuine and has not been doctored in any way whatsoever. In the absence of such evidence, other customers or employees may be called upon to testify; in which case their testimony may be successfully challenged.

Value of Items
Where the items shoplifted are low priced, lawyers have a better chance of negotiating for a reduced sentence.

If you’ve been arrested and charged with shoplifting you will need to be represented by a lawyer who knows how to defend shoplifting cases all the way through trial. Call the office of Naiburg, Obedin, and Weissman to protect your rights.