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Shoplifting and Robbery

Posted on August 12th, 2020

Shoplifting and robbery charges share some similarities and differences, but are typically two different charges that do not intersect. When understanding theft crimes, it is imperative to know the separate definitions and details of each. There are three things that an individual should know about shoplifting and robbery charges: 

  1. Shoplifting. Shoplifting is the theft of goods from an open retail establishment, typically by concealing a store item on one’s person, in pockets, or in a personal bag. The crime of shoplifting generally falls under the legal classification of larceny; therefore, shoplifting is distinct from burglary, robbery, or armed robbery. Typically, minor shoplifting crimes are often perpetrated by young individuals with little experience in the real or criminal world. A proper defense attorney may be able to secure a plea deal where that individual only serves probation or a certain amount of community service depending on the case’s determining factors. However, legal consequences and sentences usually correlate with the price of the item stolen.
  2. Robbery. Robbery is defined as the use or threat of force, or the infliction of bodily injury, in the course of committing or fleeing a theft. Typically, robbery occurs when stealing something from one’s person or home. While robberies typically do not occur in stores, they are possible depending on the nature of the crime. Regardless, unlike shoplifting, a required element of robbery is the threat or actual engagement of violence as a means of stealing the property in question. Like shoplifting, sentences for robbery charges usually depend heavily on the value of the property stolen; however, due to the violent element of a robbery charge, convicted defendants may be saddled with a felony conviction and significant prison time. 
  3. Defenses. Whether the defendant has been accused of robbery or shoplifting, it is critical to obtain a criminal defense attorney to fight against the included charges. An experienced legal representative will not only attempt to create an adequate reasonable doubt for the charged, but also help ease the process for all parties involved. 

Legal convictions create a stain on an individual’s permanent record. These stains may make it exceedingly more difficult to secure jobs and obtain loans from financial institutions for housing deposits and education fees. Ultimately, while there are some distinct differences between robbery and shoplifting charges, both carry heavy consequences. As a result, it is imperative that law-abiding citizens avoid committing such acts as a way to bypass serious, legal ramifications. 

If you’ve been arrested or charged with a crime, it is in your best interest to get the legal advice of a lawyer, such as a criminal defense lawyer from Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC. Contact a law firm today.



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