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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    6

    Default Caught Shoplifting - What Do I Need to Do

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Virginia
    A few weeks ago I was charged with shoplifting about $25.00 worth of cosmetics from Target. I was stopped before I left the store and brought to their security room. They took my picture and pictures of the items I stole and then called the police. I was issued a paper saying what I was being charged with and given my court date of august 25th. I was also given a paper stating I could no longer enter the target for a year. In addition the security officer handed me a paper which stated that I acknowledge my guilt and told me that by signing the paper I would be helping myself out in court and that it could go along way in making the process easier for me. He told me that because it was my first time and I had nothing else on my record that I would most likely just pay around $200.00 in fines and fees. I have never been to court before and have no idea what to expect. I was not arrested and have not gotten a lawyer. I don't even know if I need a lawyer and was wondering if someone could give me any kind of advice.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    641

    Default Re: Caught Shoplifting - What Do I Need to Do

    Some parts of Virginia give jail time. What part are you in?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: Caught Shoplifting - What Do I Need to Do

    I am in Norfolk. The security guard told me that given the fact that it's my first time, that I am in college with good grades, and that I signed that paper I will most likely just get the fine. I just don't know if I need a lawyer or anything. Do I just go into the court room at the time of my hearing or what?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    6,808

    Default Re: Caught Shoplifting - What Do I Need to Do

    You will have court costs and fines.

    You may be given any/either/all of the following (Virginia is tough on shoplifters). Each of these have a cost associated with them ($300+ each). Probation. Community Service. Anti-Shoplifting Class.

    Also, you will be mailed a Civil Demand. This is separate from the criminal case. This can be quite pricey also.

    You see those signs in WalMart that say shoplifting can cost $2000 or more? They are not kidding.

    You can get either a lawyer, or if you cannot afford one, plead Not Guilty and ask for a Public Defender (both of those will cost money too)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: Caught Shoplifting - What Do I Need to Do

    How to I ask for the Public Defender? Do I do it the day of the hearing? Also can I still plead not guilty even though I signed that paper admitting that I did shop lift. The security officer told me something about me not having to pay for the merchandise but I guess when you shop lift from other stores you do? Now again when I go to the court house do I just go straight to the court room or what?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    6,808

    Default Re: Caught Shoplifting - What Do I Need to Do

    You will be paying for the merchandise in the form of the Civil Demand. Also, part of the court fines are damages to the victim. PS, you will not own the items.

    When you go to court, show the clerk your summons, you will be directed. You plead not guilty, and ask for a P.D.

    Even though you are guilty, you have the right to make the State present it's case against you.

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