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P. Simmons
P. Simmons, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 34348
Experience:  16 yrs. of experience including criminal law.
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Shoplifting: If the LP guy did not find the merchandise on

Customer Question

If the LP guy did not find the merchandise on me, and once the police arrived, they charged me for shoplifting even though i didn't have anything on me when the LP searched me as well as the police officers - because i put the item back as soon as I concealing the item (once I realized my urge was taking over for stealing something I had no real use for) after they claimed i concealed it and saw it on camera, how is it possible for them to charge me if i didn't have anything one me. Don't they need intent to charge a shoplifter even though i didn't have the item which cost $29.99. They did a thorough search of my clothes and body, they didn't find anything because i truly put the item down as soon as I was in the processes of concealing the item i dropped it because i had it in my hand(however, i really had no intentions on stealing anything because I knew it was just the addiction to the adrenaline rush that i get), but they claim that once i concealed the item, its called shoplifting especially because of my three priors. Also the box was already opened, so i took the item from the already ripped opened box(that same isle had multiple boxes that were already torn open) and was planning on bringing it to the customer service counter to purchase it without the box. However, once I realized how my actions looked because it was obvious to anyone else that I was stealing it at this point because it looked as though I was concealing the item at this point due to my addiction because i have been charged three times before, so at this point i always second guess stealing anything when I get this urge. Also, I have a sponsor when i have the urge due to my addiction of the adrenaline rush. Whom I actually called just before i left the store(while i was standing at the exit) to tell them of my current urge to steal. Once i left the store, the LP brought me to a room Though the officers arrested me anyways because the LP guy told them I concealed the item and I may have said that I put the item in my pocket even though I cant be sure the video shows me concealing the item. In general, i guess it doesn't look good because the cops said to shoplift all you have to do is conceal an item. I don't think the video showed much because they basically arrested me after they heard the item was concealed. However, I cant be sure exactly what actions are able to be be seen i the video, although, again - the LP guy told them i concealed the item, even though I did take the item out of the already opened box and was actually going to pay for it. however, once i grabbed the item without the box and then walked around for a few seconds, I dropped the item, I second guessed my actions due to the way it looked but i truly had no intentions of stealing the item even though i was walking around the store trying to find the charger that I needed because I actaully went into that kmart to cash a check, and purchase a charger, though i couldnt find one for the longest time, I eventually found one but the box was already ripped open so like I said I took the item to pay for it, but then realized how it looked sand dropped the item while it was in my hand. Once I got to the store
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 9 months ago.

Hi, My name is***** am an attorney with over 16 years experience. Hopefully I can help you with your legal question.

Expert:  P. Simmons replied 9 months ago.

I am sorry for this dilemma. But not sure I understand your specific question. Do you have a question regarding this?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I asked how is it possible that they can charge me if I did not steal anything from the store, I picked it up out of a broken package and then put it down, they claimed I opened the package and left the item in my pocket. I told them I put it back because they did not find the item on me. Also, when i left the station, They never gave me my $400 eye glasses back. I tried calling them, but they said they didn't have them or couldn't find them.
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 9 months ago.

Theft is a specific intent crime...meaning that you can only be found guilty of theft if there is evidence you intended to steal the item and take some action in furtherance of the intent.

For example, if someone walks into a store with the intent to steal a candy bar. They pick up the candy bar with the intent to steal it. At that moment, they are guilty of theft.

Now...the state has the burden to prove the charge beyond a reasonable in the example above? Unlikely they can prove theft...but, say the person puts the candy bar in their pocket...and there is evidence of it is easier to prove the charge of theft.

In your case, to convict you of theft they have to prove that you had the intent to steal...unless they can prove that they will not be able to convict you

Please let me know if you have more questions. I am happy to help if I can. Otherwise, please rate the answer so I may get credit for my work.

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