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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    1

    Unhappy Caught Shoplifting, Paid Full Civil Demand Right Away

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Maryland.

    Before you read on, please please please understand that I am already struggled with my moral image, and I indeed feel horrible and ashamed, I'd greatly appreciate for no more lecturing.
    I am 18 and live in the state of Maryland. I stole around $37 of random makeup stuffs and was taken to a private room by the store securities. They asked for my Driver's license and social security number, made a copy of those. I was also taken a picture. Since this was my first time ever, I was given the options to deal with the store civilly or to be taken to the police station. So of course, I decided to deal with the store civilly, and that means to pay them the civil demand and it is double the price of the total items I stole, which was 37 x 2 = $74. So I did end up paying them $74 cash in person cooperatively and had to sign their Civil Demand notice as well as the compromising notice for not entering the Wegmans Market everywhere for 2 years. That was everything I had to do.
    I am worried and constantly troubled by this. I wonder:

    1/ Is this whole demeaning ordeal officially over, or I'll get a letter from the court in 1-2 months?
    2/ I understand that it is possible for the store to prosecute me criminally other than civilly, even after I paid fully civil demand. But, what are the chances that food warehouse like Wegmans would do that? What are the chances of this happening generally in other stores?
    3/What should I do then?
    4/ Will this be on permanent criminal record?
    5/ This is my first offense. Will it ruin my resume/future career when trying to apply for Medical school?
    6/ Is there anything I can do to "ease" the charge, if it happens?

    I am truthfully terrified and regretful. Thank you very much.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    6,485

    Default Re: Caught Shoplifted, Paid Full Civil Demand Right Away

    I am going to start with the lecture. $74 Civil Demand, no Criminal Charge....you got off with a slap on the hand. Next time, figure the average C.D. is $150 and Criminal Charges cost a heck of a lot more.


    1/ Is this whole demeaning ordeal officially over, or I'll get a letter from the court in 1-2 months?

    - We can't predict. Since you paid the civil demand...you should be fine.

    2/ I understand that it is possible for the store to prosecute me criminally other than civilly, even after I paid fully civil demand. But, what are the chances that food warehouse like Wegmans would do that? What are the chances of this happening generally in other stores? You are correct - they have 1-2 years to press charges (varies by state). Everything varies by store and even location. You might only get the Civil Demand at Wegmans in City A, but 5 miles down the road, they may have called the police.

    3/What should I do then? For now, you should be good. Worry about that if the time comes.
    4/ Will this be on permanent criminal record? No. But you may be entered into the National Retail Theft Database.
    5/ This is my first offense. Will it ruin my resume/future career when trying to apply for Medical school? Depends if Med School checks the National Retail Theft Database when they do a criminal background check. It will definitely affect med school of you steal again.
    6/ Is there anything I can do to "ease" the charge, if it happens? Hire a lawyer, see if you can get adjudication withheld (not available in all areas). If you can only get a reduced charge - unfortunately a thorough background check will show you were charged with shoplifting, but got a plea deal......

    I know you said no lectures, but again....if Med School is so important, just realize that if you shoplift again, you may screw your entire college plans and any degree earned.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    584

    Default Re: Caught Shoplifting, Paid Full Civil Demand Right Away

    Maryland is an interesting state. They are pretty lax on theft and but they do have many different theft charges. If charged at the comissioner by the store LP, you would be charged with theft under $100. Google that charge to see the penalties. If you damaged the merchandise, you would be charged with the theft under $100 and malicious destruction of property under $500. They would mail you a court date and you would have to appear and answer to the charges.

    As you have been in no trouble before, you would most likely get the STET docket or PBJ. The STET docket is for first time offenders. The case gets put on the inactive docket for one year. For any reason, you or the state can bring the charges back before the court. After one year, the state can only bring back the charges against you by showing the court "good cause". They can do this for a period of two years. After the completion of the three year period, the charge falls away and you can get your record expunged and wiped clean. The courts, police and states attorney would have no record of this event.

    PBJ is probation before judgement. This means the evidence before the judge is suffficient to find you guilty, but they are rendering a guilty judgement so that you can complete a set of requirements that the state and you attorney agree on. This can include community service, fines and/or anything they decide. Once you successfully complete the requirements, they dismiss the case and after a period of time you can get it expunged.

    I think that the store is fine with you paying the fine and it is not worth their time (in MD) to prosecute you criminally.

    Google the following:

    Theft under $100
    STET docket in MD
    Maryland Case Search

    You can search your name to see if any charges have been filed.


    What area of MD were you caught?
    Not worth my time...

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