Roselle NJ Shoplifting Lawyers
December 26, 2019
Charged with Shoplifting in Roselle NJ
Even though shoplifting in Roselle, NJ might initially seem like a minor charge that an accused person can handle on their own, the support of a criminal defense attorney can be instrumental in explaining what’s really on the line. Whether accused at Roselle Commons, Blue Iveria, or any other store or shopping center in Roselle, these allegations should be taken seriously. There are specific rules in NJ that apply to the detention or arrest of a person suspected of shoplifting. If a store employee or a police officer on the scene has cause to believe that you have purposefully concealed or removed merchandise that wasn’t paid for, you could be taken into custody.
With over 21,000 people living in Roselle, a town in Union County, NJ, it’s important to know that there are more than 50 police officers working at the local department who might respond in the event that a consumer is accused of shoplifting. Depending on whether you are charged with a disorderly persons offense or a first, second, third, or fourth degree crime for shoplifting, prosecutors at the Roselle Municipal Court or Union County Superior Court, have an obligation to follow the formal process for criminal charges.
Shoplifting is a serious matter in Roselle, New Jersey, even if it does not carry the weight of a felony crime. Not taking action to get the best shoplifting defense lawyer who can successfully handle your case could be a big mistake. In some cases, the prosecutor assigned to the case might even try to elevate the shoplifting charges to a robbery crime or aggregate the amounts associated with several shoplifting incidents in order to charge you with a more serious offense. If any kind of force was allegedly exercised by the accused person in the taking of the merchandise, what would have previously been a shoplifting offense becomes a much more serious matter. If you have been arrested for shoplifting in Roselle, contact our experienced attorneys to discuss your case and learn more about presenting your best defense. We are available around the clock at (908) 838-0150 to provide you with a free consultation.
Roselle Shoplifting Charges
Charges of shoplifting fall under N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11. Several different offenses meet the criteria for a person to be charged with shoplifting in Roselle. In total, one or more of six different acts might be alleged against an accused party. These actions include:
- Taking of merchandise without paying for it
- Concealing merchandise with the intention of depriving that merchant of the item or payment for the item
- Transferring products from one container to another in an effort to conceal them
- Altering labels with the intention of paying a lower price than what the merchant was charging for the item in question
- Taking a shopping cart from company property
- Under-ringing, a practice that involves a store employee knowingly ringing up items at a value for less than what the items sell for
In addition to these forms of shoplifting specific to acts of theft, using or possessing an anti-shoplifting device within a store is also a disorderly persons offense. Under current laws, it is presumed that any person with such a device in a store has the intention of using it to carry out a crime of theft.
Who Can be Arrested for Shoplifting in Roselle, New Jersey?
An officer does not necessarily need to have a warrant to arrest someone for shoplifting in Roselle. If there is probable cause that the person in question was stealing, this is enough to initiate an arrest. Being arrested, however, means that the accused person has certain rights. That includes asking to speak with an attorney. The Roselle police station is located at 210 Chestnut Street in Roselle. After being detained at the store, you will be taken to the station for processing. At this point, you will likely be released and given a notice to appear in either Roselle Municipal Court or Union County Superior Court, depending on the degree of the specific shoplifting charges.
Punishments for Shoplifting in Roselle NJ
The basis for punishment for shoplifting in Roselle has to do with the item’s underlying value. If the item was valued at up to $200, this can be charged as a disorderly persons offense in NJ. The maximum fine for this charge Is $1,000 with a maximum six-month jail term. A first time shoplifting offense also carries mandatory community service time.
The consequences for a shoplifting conviction increase based on the item’s value at the time of the theft, specifically as follows:
- Items valued between $200-500 carry fourth-degree shoplifting crime with a fine up to $10,000 and up to 18 months in prison.
- Items valued between $501-74,999 carry third degree shoplifting charge penalties of up to $15,000 in fines and up to five years in jail.
- Any item valued beyond $75,000 carries a maximum ten-year prison term and fines as high as $150,000. These are classified as second degree crimes.
Can a Roselle Shoplifting Case be Dismissed?
The sooner the accused obtains legal representation to help with charges for shoplifting in Roselle, the better. First, for a first time charge with items valued over $200 but less than $2,000, a skilled shoplifting defense lawyer might be able to get those charges decreased to a disorderly persons offense.
In addition, common defenses to shoplifting charges include raising doubt that the person accused was the one actually spotted by a witness or seen on surveillance footage, or challenging the underlying elements of the shoplifting crime. Highlighting whether or not the defendant had the intent to steal the item in question is another way to raise doubts about whether the person actually committed the crime in question. You should share the specifics of the case with an experienced lawyer for shoplifting in Roselle immediately if arrested, as these facts may help to support your defense.
Can You Expunge a Roselle Shoplifting Offense?
Shoplifting charges can be expunged from a person’s criminal record in the future. The waiting period for a conviction for a shoplifting charge involving less than $200 in value is five years. For persons charged with taking something valued at more than $200, the waiting period is six years. This applies to convictions for shoplifting, whereas charges that are dismissed are immediately eligible for expungement and charges dismissed by way of Pre-Trial Intervention or Conditional Dismissals programs become eligible for expungement 6 months following successful completion.
Consult a Roselle NJ Shoplifting Defense Attorney Now
Get help when facing charges for shoplifting by calling our local Roselle Shoplifting Lawyers for a free consultation. You can reach us by phone at (908) 838-0150 or by contacting us online. We are also happy to set up an appointment to meet with you at our office in Union County.