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  1. #1
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    Oct 2014
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    3

    Default When Does a Detention of a Juvenile Sholifter Become an Arrest

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: California

    Hello.
    I have a question regarding a shoplifting offense committed by a juvenile. This juvenile was detained in a retail store for about an hour. During this hour, they were told to sign some forms, fill out personal information, and they also had their fingerprints taken. The police were called but only to check if the juvenile had any priors. Once they called back and said they were clear, the juvenile was released. They were told that they would receive something in the mail for payment (civil demand) as well as a court date if their lawyers decided to press charges. (Or something similar to that, they can't remember exactly..)
    It has been over a year, and they haven't received anything other that a civil demand.
    My main question is: Was this juvenile arrested? They never went to the police station and never had the electronic fingerprints done, they were only fingerprinted on a piece of paper. I'm assuming this is only for the store record, or could they have submitted them to the police? Does anyone have any insight on what the fingerprints during the store detention mean? And if they were submitted, can the paper fingerprints be added into a system where they would be discovered through a fingerprint background check?
    I am thinking this could possibly have just been for an incident report for the police department. If so, what would this mean for the juvenile?
    This juvenile is now an adult and in college, pursing a career in education. Their main concern is whether or not this 'arrest' will show up, as they are required to be cleared through a fingerprinting background check. They are very worried about this and are afraid to call the police department, as their case could still come up.

    Also - one other question regarding the statute of limitations.
    I understand that this does not start running until the juvenile becomes an adult, but does this mean that they won't be clear until their nineteenth birthday? Or will it not start until their birthday but then still stop the year after the incident?
    I realize this may be confusing. I'll do a 'for example'. This juvenile, age 17 was detained in December. They turned 18 in September of the next year. So, as it is now past December, aka a year after the incident, has the statute of limitations run out? Or will it run out a year following their 18th birthday?

    Thank you very much for you help and insight. Sorry for the long post.
    This person is currently 18 years of age, and the crime was committed when they had just turned 17.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    California
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    20,594

    Default Re: When Does a Detention of a Juvenile Sholifter Become an Arrest

    Quote Quoting Billy5299
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    My main question is: Was this juvenile arrested?
    If they wewre not turned over to the police and released on a citation or booked, they were not arrested.

    I'm assuming this is only for the store record, or could they have submitted them to the police? Does anyone have any insight on what the fingerprints during the store detention mean?
    A form of identification in case the juvenile later claims that it was not really him or her that got caught.

    And if they were submitted, can the paper fingerprints be added into a system where they would be discovered through a fingerprint background check?
    Possibly. But, unless the police get involved, no. Typically, if the police are not called to the scene the police will not be involved.

    Also - one other question regarding the statute of limitations.
    A typical misdemeanor theft must have criminal court action begun one year from the time of the event.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
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    3

    Default Re: When Does a Detention of a Juvenile Sholifter Become an Arrest

    Hello,
    Thanks so much for your reply. So do you think it's safe to say that this will not show up on a background check?
    And you're also saying it's possible that fingerprints taken on paper can be added to the police system?

    And regarding the statute of limitations - I've read that the SOL doesn't start until they turn 18.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
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    Default Re: When Does a Detention of a Juvenile Sholifter Become an Arrest

    Quote Quoting Billy5299
    View Post
    Hello,
    Thanks so much for your reply. So do you think it's safe to say that this will not show up on a background check?
    And you're also saying it's possible that fingerprints taken on paper can be added to the police system?

    And regarding the statute of limitations - I've read that the SOL doesn't start until they turn 18.
    Pursuant to PC 802(a), prosecution "shall be commenced within one year after commission of the offense" for such misdemeanor offenses. The age issue has to do primarily with the victims of enumerated sexual offenses.

    And on the extremely odd chance that the business turns over the matter to the police to request prosecution and the police enter your print they took into evidence and a match is eventually made and tied to your name, AND you are arrested, it will be a part of a state criminal offender record. But, a lot would have to occur for that to happen.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

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