Shoplifting and Petty Theft

The term “Petty Theft” is something of a misnomer, because once charged, it could have very serious reverberations throughout the rest of your life. In today’s trying times, it is easy to be swayed into getting creative in the procurement of sometimes necessary items. Who is it really hurting? The corporations surely could stand to lose a bit and the skyrocketing prices of everyday items must have shrinkage costs built in, so really, what is a notebook and pens for a struggling student here, or switching the tags on an expensive pair of jeans there? The answer may be far more costly than originally imagined.

With more than 10 million Americans caught shoplifting within the last 5 years alone, this is a crime with a popularity that is growing, rather than diminishing. Many blame the harsh economic times, and site the fact that it’s not just pre-pubescent kids taking a pack of gum because they’ve already spent their allowances, but an increasing number of adults are being charged. Surprisingly, many people don’t realize that using deceit while shopping is tantamount to shoplifting. What may seem unethical is really more than that, it’s illegal. Petty theft is defined under California State Law as the act of stealing goods that are valued at $400 or less. There are many ways in which this may be accomplished, such as:

  • Shoplifting (the most common form)
  • Switching price tags
  • Putting on new clothes or shoes in a dressing room & leaving the store
  • Dining & dashing
  • Consuming food in a store & not paying for it at checkout

At the Law Office of Ricardo A. Nicol, we understand that a single moment of weakness does not define a person. Ricardo Nicol was a prosecutor for 23 years before deciding to put his expertise to work for the community through his private practice, several years ago. Attorney Nicol is in possession of a hard-earned advantage; all of his years working for the opposition can now be put to work for you, ensuring superior representation for your case. If you’ve been charged with petty theft, it is not something to take lightly. There are many complexities that only a seasoned attorney can successfully handle, for instance, if this is not your first charge of shoplifting, you may be charged with felony petty theft, which carries with it much more severe penalties. You may face the following:

  • Fines
  • Court-ordered counseling
  • Restitution
  • Probation/parole
  • Jail

A conviction of theft may have more long-term consequences as well. Your record may be tainted and this may affect your chances of employment, the ability to purchase a home, etc. If you are facing petty theft charges in the Santa Ana area, be responsible and proactive about your future. Contact Ricardo Nicol today for your free initial consultation. Get the representation that you deserve and have confidence in the knowledge that you don’t have to let your past determine your future.

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At the Law Offices of Ricardo A. Nicol, we represent clients throughout Southern California in Tustin, Santa Ana, Orange, San Diego, San Fernando, Hollywood, Whittier, Torrance, Fontana, Upland, Orange County, Riverside County, San Bernardino County, Los Angeles County and San Diego County.
The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relation.