Columbus Shoplifting Attorney
Ohio Shoplifting Penalties
Shoplifting is a common occurrence in our city, and when merchants or police are able to catch a perpetrator, the penalties are designed to be harsh enough to prevent a repeat offense. Most shoplifters are not hardened criminals, and a large number are youths, so law enforcement officials generally take a shoplifting arrest as a chance to deliver a strict sentence to the offender so that they are less likely to settle into committing theft crimes as a routine. Shoplifting is punished according to the value of the stolen goods. For property valued at less than $1,000, the charge is petty theft, a misdemeanor which is punishable by up to 6 months in jail and $1,000 in fines. If the property is between $1,000 and $7,500, it is a 5 th-degree felony, which can result in a sentence of up to a year in jail and a $2,500 fine. Other circumstances, such as if the stolen item was a gun, can increase the charge.
If you have been charged with shoplifting, you need to speak with a Columbus theft crime attorney immediately. Regardless of the value of the item and the potential sentence, any conviction for shoplifting will be added to your criminal record. In the years following your case, you will often be required to disclose having a criminal background, and many companies will not hire you on the grounds that you have previously been found guilty of theft. It is in your best interests, in the short term and far into the future, to defend yourself from a guilty verdict.
Theft Crime Lawyer in Columbus
When you have been arrested and accused of a crime, you should find an attorney who has successfully defended many cases similar to yours before. The Koffel Law Firm has represented thousands of clients in our area on all types of theft charges, from shoplifting to grand theft and armed robbery. There are many ways to approach shoplifting allegations, and when you work with an attorney from the firm, you will be able to select the strategy most likely to succeed. Whether your objective is to fight the case and prove your innocence or to seek a reduction of charges or a plea bargain and theft diversion, by retaining the firm you will greatly improve your chances of success.
Contact a Columbus shoplifting attorney to learn more about what you can do to resolve the charges you face and to avoid the consequences of being found guilty.