Shoplifting doesn’t seem like it would be that much of a problem, but it can have dire consequences that could end in jail time, forcing you to pay costly fees and even has the potential to make you lose your job. Having a criminal record will most often reduce many of your future professional opportunities. So while it may seem that there is no other option but to take the items you cannot pay for, it will often come back to cause more harm than good.


Details of the Case

Many times there are aspects of the case that may prevent the charges of shoplifting from actually sticking and you receiving a conviction for this crime. A few situations where there would be no guilty conviction are the following:

  •    A simple case of mistaken identity. The employee of the shop or the store security guard may have you mistaken for another person.
  •    There could have been a misunderstanding that caused the store to feel that you were attempting to remove items from the shop without paying for them.

Whatever the details of the case, it is important to have someone with experience work to make sure you are receiving the best representation possible.


Accusations of the Prosecution

There may be some situations where you never walked out of the store with items for which you did not pay. Is it possible to still be accused of shoplifting? It is.


  •    Even if you did not walk out of the store with stolen products, if you tried to conceal any merchandise, you could be charged with shoplifting because of your intent to take the items without paying for them.
  •    Likewise, if you switched price tags to get a product for a smaller false fee, then you could also be accused of shoplifting without ever leaving the store.


Levels of Charges

Some charges relate to the quantity of value that is placed on the items stolen.

  •    Less than $250 is considered a gross misdemeanor with one year in jail and fines of up to $5,000.
  •    $250 to $1,500 is a Level I Class C Felony with the potential for 16 months in prison and $10,000 in fines.
  •    Anything more than $1,500 loss is a Level II Class B Felony and risks you spending 43 months in jail and $20,000 in fines.


The Nahajski Firm is on your side if you have been charged with shoplifting. Contact or call the Nahajski Firm at 206-621-0500 to learn about your options to possibly help prevent any shoplifting charge from being a conviction.