Eatontown Shoplifting Lawyer

How an Martin Thomas GDM6144p2_webEatontown Shoplifting Attorney Can Defend You

Shoplifting tends to be most prevalent in towns with malls or outlets. As such, in Monmouth County, the Eatontown Municipal Court tends to handle its fair share of shoplifting charges. If you have a Eatontown shoplifting charge or shoplifting case anywhere in New Jersey, then call to speak to an experienced attorney on your  shoplifting case.

In my experience in handling shoplifting cases, most clients were hardworking, decent people who acted on a bad impulse. These people shouldn’t have to live with the stigma and difficulty of trying to find a job with this conviction on their record. It is also true that while some former clients have made mistakes, it is possible that store security can make mistakes too. These mistakes lead to innocent people being charged with shoplifting. As such, it is highly suggested that you have an experienced Eatontown shoplifting attorney in your defense.

Defending an Eatontown shoplifting case or any shoplifting case presents some strong obstacles; which can be overcome through hard work and investigation. Eatontown shoplifting charges often involve store surveillance videos that capture the accused near the site of the incident. In Eatontown shoplifting cases, there will always be store employees and loss prevention employees who will serve as witnesses for the prosecution at the time of trial.

An Eatontown shoplifting lawyer will obtain all of the evidence (videos, store receipts, witness names, photos of the items, etc.) and will prepare your defense. Some strategies are attacking the credibility of the States witness’s, the handling of the evidence/chain of custody issues or an affirmative defense of mental health problems (if the client has any) in the right scenario. Further, the state has to prove each and every element of your Eatontown shoplifting charge to prove your guilt. All I have to do as raise a reasonable doubt as to only one of the elements to obtain a not guilty on your behalf. These are serious charges which have serious consequences.

Grading and Penalties for Shoplifting

Under the law, the grading or degree of charge for shoplifting is based on the full retail value of the merchandise taken. Thus, if you have been charged for shoplifting, the severity of the offense is in proportion to the value of the stuff you are accused of trying to conceal or take. Consequently, shoplifting shall be charged in accordance with the full retail value of the merchandise taken, as provided in N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11. Under the statute, shoplifting offenses are graded as follows:

2nd Degree: Shoplifting is a crime of the second degree if the full retail value of the merchandise was $75,000.00 or more. N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11c(1). A crime of the second degree is punishable by a term of imprisonment of five to 10 years, a fine not to exceed $150,000.00, or both.

3rd Degree: Shoplifting is a crime of the third degree if the full retail value of the merchandise exceeds $500.00 but is less than $75,000.00. N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11c(2). A crime of the third degree is punishable by a term of imprisonment of  three to five years, a fine not to exceed $15,000.00, or both.

4th Degree: Shoplifting is a crime of the fourth degree if the full retail value of the merchandise was at least $200.00 but does not exceed $500.00. N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11c(3). A crime of the fourth degree is punishable by a term of imprisonment not to exceed 18 months, a fine not to exceed $10,000 or both.

Disorderly Persons Offense: Shoplifting is a disorderly person’s offense if the full retail value of the merchandise was less than $200.00. N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11c (4). A disorderly person’s offense is punishable by a term of imprisonment not to exceed six months, a fine not to exceed $1,000 or both.

The additional mandatory penalties for anyone convicted of shoplifting under the Act are as follows:

Additional Mandatory: for a first offense, at least ten days of community service; for a  second offense, at least 15 days of community service; and for a third or subsequent offense, a maximum of 25 days of community service and any person convicted of a third or subsequent shoplifting offense shall serve a minimum term of imprisonment of not less than 90 days.  N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11c (4).

If you have been charged with shoplifting, have questions or fears and are seeking legal representation, then contact Thomas H. Martin, Esq. at (732) 431-2224 who has handled Freehold shoplifting, Toms River shoplifting, Eatontown shoplifting and shoplifting charges all over New Jersey. You can also email me at tmartin@jerseycriminal.com. I have successfully and aggressively handled shoplifting cases in both Superior and Municipal Court.

 

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