In Montgomery County, shoplifting is defined as deliberately taking the property of another without their explicit permission or proper payment. While shoplifting may seem like an insubstantial and common offense, the consequences of which can be considerable, including fines and jail time.
Even having a criminal record with just a shoplifting charge can cause long-term issues and battling such a case alone may be fruitless. Therefore, it is advisable to obtain the assistance of a qualified Montgomery County shoplifting lawyer to adequately represent you should you be charged with shoplifting. Individuals should seek legal counsel who understands the law and has experience handling theft cases.
Under Montgomery County law, an individual can be charged with shoplifting if they knowingly take an item from a store with the deliberate refusal to pay for said item. Less commonly known, shoplifting can also be considered the concealment of an item while still in the store as it can be seen as the preemptive intention to shoplift.
Even more so, a case can be brought against an individual if they purchased merchandise that was stolen previously. Therefore, even if the individual themselves did not steal the item, they may still be charged with shoplifting if they either knew the item was stolen or had reason to believe it was.
Being unaware of such laws already puts an individual at a disadvantage if charged with shoplifting, thus why it is beneficial to seek the aid of a knowledgeable Montgomery Country shoplifting lawyer.
While most believe that they can get off with a simple fine, unbeknownst to them is the fact that a shoplifting charge in Montgomery County can include significant fines, ranging to thousands of dollars, as well as substantial jail time that may go as far as a few decades. The manner by which such a charge is determined depends upon your previous criminal record and the value of the items that were taken.
Therefore, it is ideal to proceed with caution and retain a Montgomery County shoplifting lawyer to build a strong defense and mitigate potential sentences.
Oftentimes, people believe that if they are caught in the act of shoplifting, confessing immediately to the crime will garner a lighter punishment; however, confessing may deteriorate any argument counter to the charge. Similar to more severe criminal cases, it is always better to remain silent until you have a well-practiced attorney present, as is your right.
Without a confession, it is the burden of the prosecutor to gather sufficient evidence to build a case against you, and there is ultimately no guarantee that they will be able to prove you’re guilty. However, if provided with a confession, a prosecutor may be able to build a stronger case against you, at which point, the ramifications may be more severe than having remained silent.
Even if the prosecutor is able to bring a charge against you, the advantage of having a Montgomery County shoplifting lawyer is to have an experienced professional negotiate for a lesser sentence which may not be accomplished alone. This is due to the defense lawyer’s understanding of the legal system and the possible relationships that may exist among them and the prosecutor, judges, or police officers.
If you have been charged with shoplifting, do not mistake the potential strategies and options that a Montgomery County shoplifting lawyer can provide for you. Get in contact with one today to begin the discussion of your legal rights and options.