Post-Holiday Shopping And Shoplifting Allegations

Posted on in Criminal Defense

Post-holiday season, you’re probably headed back to one or two stores to return items. In the hubbub of shopping and busy crowds, you need to be on high alert for increased shoplifting watches. Make sure you carry your item in within a bag and carry the receipt with you in case anyone asks where you got the item. As soon as you enter the store, ask for assistance with returning items. Going with a friend tends to make the process easier. Unfortunately, sometimes retailers can take things a step too far. Being on high alert for theft means that shoppers need to beware retailer allegations of shoplifting. If you have been accused, know your rights and contact a Chicago criminal defense lawyer. Do not let a story bully you into confessing.

Since stores are watching out for shoplifting behavior, the chances of being accused are greater this time of year than any other. Stores are required to have seen you make an attempt to steal something (probable cause) before accusing you of this, but recently stores have been in the national spotlight for detaining customers after racially profiling them.  Stores cannot keep you in a small space without allowing you to leave that room, but some stores and their employees attempt to use threats or intimidation to get to confess to a crime. In the short term, the best thing you can do is cooperate but you also want to watch out for any efforts that are used to try to force you into confessing.

The store does have the right to call the police if they find that you have stolen property on your person. Following this incident, you need to write down all the details about what happened and to immediately contact an Illinois criminal defense attorney. Take your case seriously, as a shoplifting offense could have an impact on your personal record.

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