Not everyone accused of a crime is guilty. And fortunately, not everyone charged with shoplifting is ultimately convicted. But when you are initially charged, the outlook can seem bleak. Facing criminal charges, especially for the first time, can be extremely stressful and even frightening. Having an experienced defense lawyer on your side can help.
Maybe you forgot to pay for something or it could be a case of mistaken identity. There are literally hundreds of different things that could lead to a shoplifting charge, and not all of them are criminal. Though we understand some people who are charged with crimes like this actually committed them. We also know that even these people typically regret the action that got them in this predicament.
We all make mistakes. And if you committed a shoplifting offense you now regret, we understand. But being scared to stand up for your rights certainly won’t help the situation. A local and experienced criminal defense lawyer can be your aggressive advocate during this trying time. Whether defending you against false accusations or ensuring the courts get the whole picture of what happened, you do have someone on your side.
Ohio Shoplifting Laws & Penalties
In Ohio, shoplifting is considered a theft offense and like all theft offense, the penalty you face is directly related to the value of the item(s) you are accused of taking. Obviously, if you are accused of taking jewelry, you will face a more stringent sentence than if you are accused of taking a pack of cigarettes.
In the following table you can see how the value affects the charge against you:
|Up to $500||1st degree misdemeanor||6 months in jail and $1,000 in fines|
|$500 to $5,000||5th degree felony||6-12 months in prison and $2,500 in fines|
|$5,000 to $100,000||4th degree felony grand theft||6-18 months in prison and $5,000 in fines|
Ref: ORC 2913.02
Fighting An Ohio Shoplifting Charge – How Can a Lawyer Help?
A criminal defense attorney’s primary job is ensuring you are treated fairly within the criminal courts. They are there to look after your constitutional rights and your best interests. If there is an opportunity for the charges to be reduced or even dropped, they would pursue these goals tirelessly.
Your attorney is there to help you and only you get the best outcome possible in court. If you’ve been charged with shoplifting in Ohio, contact us to speak with a local defense attorney today.