Suffolk County Shoplifting / Petit Larceny Attorney

Petit Larceny-violation of penal law155.25 – (shoplifting) a person steals property and commits larceny with intent to deprive another of property or to appropriate the same to himself or to a third person, he wrongfully takes, obtains or withholds such property from an owner thereof.

Shoplifting is defined as a person taking an item or items from a store without purchasing the items first. If the items in question are valued at less than one thousand dollars, you may be charged with petit larceny also called shoplifting, a Class A Misdemeanor in New York. Punishments for Class A Misdemeanors range from community service, probationary periods, fines, or up to one year in jail.

Typically an individual that is caught shoplifting is brought into the back room of the department store. The person is asked to sign certain documents admitting to the theft. The police I then contacted. The police typically give an individual a ticket to appear in court for an arraignment.

Arraignment is a formal reading of charges charging document in the presence of the alleged defendant to inform the defendant of the charges against him or her. In response to arraignment, the accused is expected to enter a plea. Acceptable pleas vary among jurisdictions, but they generally include “not guilty”, the person is presented with the formal charges called the accusatory instrument as well to supplement the summons that was issued by the police officer. The accusatory instrument has much more details about the charges that are being presented against the defendant as well as the facts that support the charges.

If you are caught shoplifting, the offense is your first for shoplifting and the merchandise is valued at less than a certain amount, the district attorney will offer to reduce the charge from a misdemeanor to an Adjournment in Contemplation of Dismissal if you complete a one-day program called Stoplift. This means the charges will be dismissed as long as you stay out of trouble for six months.

If the merchandise is valued above a certain amount or if the shoplifting offense is not your first, then you likely will have to do community service in order for the charges to be reduced to a violation, which is not a crime, and will have to pay a fine.

If you have been charged with shoplifting, contact an criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Often, a retail store will send a written request to the defendant to pay for the items he or she attempted to shoplift, even though the merchandise was not damaged and never left the store. The store usually not only requests reimbursement for the items but asks for triple the price it charges normally. We advise clients not to pay the store any money. Once somebody makes a complaint it is out of the persons or companies in ability to determine what is going to happen with the case in the plea bargain phase when it comes to shoplifting charges from Department stores.

Due to the uncertain nature of punishment, it is best to request the assistance of our law offices soon after the incident so we can best serve you. Don’t plead guilty to an offense without first consulting Shawn Kassman, a lawyer with tremendous experience defending shoplifting cases. Whether a simple mistake or oversight on your behalf, or a case of mistaken identity, Shawn Kassman will aggressively fight for you.

Even if the shoplifted items have been returned, your name and contact information may be requested from the store where an incident occurred. Though the situation may seem closed or forgotten, it is important to contact Shawn Kassman and our legal team so we can help you assess the situation and assert your rights. Please call 631-232-9479.

Contact Suffolk County Criminal Defense Attorney Shawn Kassman

We strongly recommend you contact Shawn Kassman or a member of our legal team by calling 631-232-9479 (toll-free 888-545-2944) or fill out our online intake form. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and represent clients located in Central Islip (main office location), Holtsville (office location), Bayshore, Brentwood, Oakdale, Sayville, Port Jefferson and Riverhead and both Suffolk and Nassau counties.