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Will I Face Criminal Charges for Shoplifting in Texas?

Posted on in Criminal Defense

TX defense lawyerShoplifting is one of the most common crimes in the country. In fact, it is estimated that there are over 500,000 incidents of shoplifting every day in the U.S. Most people know that taking something from a store without paying for it is against the law. However, few realize the consequences that retail theft can lead to. Shoplifting in Texas can damage your personal reputation, limit your employment opportunities, and in some cases, even lead to jail time.

Shoplifting Falls Under the Category of Theft

Unlike other states, there is not a law in Texas that specifically deals with shoplifting. If you are caught shoplifting, you face charges for theft. While shoplifting often brings to mind images of someone stuffing stolen items in a jacket or bag, this is not the only form of shoplifting that can result in criminal charges. Other situations that can lead to theft charges include:

  • Using a self-checkout register and not scanning every item
  • Returning a stolen item for cash or store credit
  • Changing barcodes or price tags on items
  • Working with a cashier who agrees to under-ring items or “forgets” to scan items

It is also a criminal offense in Texas to possess a device used to facilitate shoplifting. For example, some individuals use aluminum-lined bags nicknamed “booster bags” to prevent anti-theft devices from functioning correctly. Manufacturing, distributing, or merely possessing a device such as this is punishable by a heavy fine and jail time in Texas.

Criminal Penalties for Shoplifting in Texas

The potential criminal penalties that you face for shoplifting in Texas depend on the value of the item or items that you allegedly stole. Taking items valued at less than $100 is a class C misdemeanor punishable by a $500 fine. Theft of items valued between $500 - $2,000 is a Class B misdemeanor punishable by a 2,000 fine and up to 180 days in jail. Theft of items valued between $750 and $2,500 is a Class A misdemeanor punishable by a $4,000 fine and up to a year in jail. If you are accused of stealing items valued at greater than $2,500, you face felony charges. If convicted, you could be sentenced to several years in jail.

Contact a Collin County Shoplifting Defense Lawyer

If you or a loved one were accused of shoplifting, contact a Frisco criminal defense attorney from the Law Offices of Biederman & Burleson P.L.L.C. for help. You or your loved one could be facing criminal charges and even imprisonment. Call 469-333-3333 for a free, confidential consultation today.

 

Source:

https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/PE/htm/PE.31.htm

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