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P. Simmons
P. Simmons, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 26281
Experience:  16 yrs. of experience including criminal law.
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On June 12th,my girlfriend and I were at a bar.Ive gone to

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On June 12th,my girlfriend and I were at a bar.I've gone to this bar many times and was aware of the security personnel setting and security cameras.It's one of the reasons why I choose to go to a bar like this since I'm a NJ Law Enforcement Officer.Towards the end of the night my girl and I were about to leave.I was still inside and she was outside smoking. I had picked up her purse along with her makeup purse and left while meeting her outside. When we got home,she opened her purse and realized what was in it was not hers but it had a cellphone in it.So she contacted the person who it belonged to and arranged to bring it back that night.When we get to her girls house the cops pull up and we begin to be questioned ALOT.So the Sgt let us go and about a week ago I get fourth degree Theft charge.This was a mistake of mine and we brought it back a hour later to the owner.So I'm very upset because I thought I did the right thing but the cops believed I took this purse unlawfully.Im upset.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 5 years ago.
Thanks for the chance to assist

It looks like your question was cut off. What is your specific question please?

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
On June 12th,my girlfriend and I were at a bar.I've gone to this bar many times and was aware of the security personnel setting and security cameras.It's one of the reasons why I choose to go to a bar like this since I'm a NJ Law Enforcement Officer.Towards the end of the night my girl and I were about to leave.I was still inside and she was outside smoking. I had picked up her purse along with her makeup purse and left while meeting her outside. When we got home,she opened her purse and realized what was in it was not hers but it had a cellphone in it.So she contacted the person who it belonged to and arranged to bring it back that night.When we get to her girls house the cops pull up and we begin to be questioned ALOT.So the Sgt let us go and about a week ago I get fourth degree Theft charge.This was a mistake of mine and we brought it back a hour later to the owner.So I'm very upset because I thought I did the right thing but the cops believed I took this purse unlawfully.Im upset.
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 5 years ago.
Thanks

OK, here is the NJ law for theft

N.J. Stat. § 2C:20-3 (2009)

§ 2C:20-3. Theft by unlawful taking or disposition


   a. Movable property. A person is guilty of theft if he unlawfully takes, or exercises unlawful control over, movable property of another with purpose to deprive him thereof.

b. Immovable property. A person is guilty of theft if he unlawfully transfers any interest in immovable property of another with purpose to benefit himself or another not entitled thereto.



SO, to find you guilty, they need to prove you took the purse, knowing it belonged to another person, with the intent to keep for yourself. Now, just because you give it back does not mean you can not be prosecuted...but the state will need to prove at the time you took it you planned to keep it.

I think this case will win or loose based on the video tape evidence. I suspect you have not seen it yet. But you will have the chance, since they have charged you criminally in this matter. You should work with your lawyer to get a copy of and review the tape.

In the end, the state has the burden of proof. Based on your description, unless there is incriminating evidence on the tape, it is not likely they will be able to convict you


Please let me know if you have further questions; if so I will do my best to answer them. If not please hit the accept button, its the only way I get credit for my work.

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P. Simmons, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 26281
Experience: 16 yrs. of experience including criminal law.
P. Simmons and other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Your answer is helpful on top of my lawyers who I have no retained yet I want to speak to one more lawyer. But if I give you more details, will I be billed for more of your opinion? I have no problem paying for you answering my question.
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 5 years ago.
No worries, feel free to provide more info and if I can help, I will. If your happy with the answer you can accept again

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Ok, so I assume my $45 has been paid for my orginal question, correct? And any additional details I may add for you to help give me a more detailed opinion is included in the orginal $45? Since I would like to add more detials to this Fourth Degree Theft charge my girlfriend and I have been charged with. I believe it my help you give me a better opinion since when I orginally gave you a description on what happen, the site only allowed me so much space. So am I going to be charged more if I give you more information to this incident?
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 5 years ago.
NO, please feel free to ask additional details on this incident...if I can help, I will

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Honestly,this was a mistake of my own.I would never do something like this. If what you are saying in your opinion that it comes down to incriminating evidence on the tape.What kind of evidence on a tape could convict someone.Its already on tape me placing the item in my girlfriends purse and I have admitted to doing so.When we discovered we had an item that did not belong to us,we returned it to the owner.So the tape is the key to this being either thrown out or pursued further which I do not understand when the incident was a mistake.What would have happen if I discovered it,and then just took it to the police station and explained to them what happen,would we have been charged still?The women admitted nothing was missing. I feel I did the right thing.I talked to a few cop friends of mine and if they arrived that night,and the woman didn't want to press charges and said nothing was missing,then it would have been done. But now over a month this Sgt who was really rude at the scene and I was a little aggravated myself because it was being blown out of proportion.So all the police have is a tape to work with and analize to death on what they believe was my intent by what they see. And they will see exactly what I admitted to.
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 5 years ago.
I understand your description. It makes sense to me. If the tape corroborates your story, then your likely in good shape. IF the tape contradicts your version, then you will have problems.

As I said, if you are charged, you will be able to get a copy of the tape to review...I would start there.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I have been charged. My girlfriend and I were pulled over by the police over a month after the incident my a Detective and was asked to report to the police station 2 days later at 9am to be charged. So I have been charged with 4th degree Theft. It's not like I put the item in my girlfriends purse and ran out the door. When I got outside the bar, we actually stayed to watch this fight about to break out. So I hope they got cameras outside as well so they can see that it wasn't like I rushed out of the place with a small purse. The entire thing is just ridiculous. I was drunk and impaired. But after getting home, I realized what happen and my girlfriend said she didn't bring out her other purse/clutch/makeup bag or whatever you call it. It was so long ago I can really remember much but the main thing I do remember is that I wouldn't be stupid enough to take something that didn't belong to me even if they had cameras or not. So hopefully in this situation, the cameras could work in my favor.

Thank you for all your help
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 5 years ago.
Welcome

Best of luck

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