Although shoplifting is often thought of as a minor crime, the realty of the situation is that these charges can create a criminal record that will follow you for years. With your future on the line, you need an experienced defense lawyer fighting to minimize the damage and prevent a shoplifting charge from affecting your future.
The Law Office of Ernest J. Bauer, Jr., provides you with exactly this type of advocate; with more than a decade of experience focused primarily in the field of criminal defense, I have the knowledge and advanced legal strategies necessary to protect your interests. During my time as a Covington shoplift attorney, I have learned that the most effective approach to theft cases is to be proactive. I begin working on your case as soon as possible, negotiating with prosecutors and conducting investigations in an effort to resolve your case quickly and favorably.
Shoplifting Charges Should Not Be Taken Lightly
The court will look at a number of factors when determining the severity of the penalties you face when accused of shoplifting. These include:
- Your background and criminal history
- Value of the allegedly stolen property
- Location where the crime was purported to have happened
As the value of the items rises, the type of charge you face can change from a misdemeanor to a felony. The difference is significant. Conviction of a misdemeanor shoplifting charge will typically result in a fine of a few hundred dollars, mandatory attendance at a rehabilitation class and months of probation. Felony convictions result in huge fines, time in jail, and mandatory community service after you are released. You will also be labeled a felon, which can affect your ability to obtain employment, housing and student loans, and many other aspects of your life.
Under Louisiana law, manipulating a product in a way that makes it easier to steal, such as removing the tags, can result in shoplifting charges even if you never leave the store.