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I was stopped for shoplifting 2 weeks ago at Target. They…

I was stopped for...

I was stopped for shoplifting 2 weeks ago at Target. They did not call the police and just gathered information about me. I did not get ticked or arrested. All I have gotten is the demand for money in the mail $500 and have not paid it. There was no damage to their property. What are the chances at this point of a criminal charge being made and should I pay the demand fee. Please Help Me. Frank Riley.

Lawyer's Assistant: Since laws vary from place to place, what state is this in? And when did this happen?

This Feb 23, 2018 and its Sacramento, California

Lawyer's Assistant: Has anything been filed or reported?

Not that I know of how can I tell I have not had any contact with anyone

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

First time offense all items returned.

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Answered in 1 minute by:
3/9/2018
Zoey, JD
Zoey, JD, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 31,426
Experience: Active member of the NYS bar since 1989
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Hi,

I'm Zoey.

I've reviewed your post. Please be patient as I may need to research for you, and it also takes time to compose and type a reply.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
thank you I look forward to your advice. Frank
Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I am at work at the moment it is not a good place to talk about this on the phone.
Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Can you send your answer to my email address as I am living work by 4:00 and it would be easier to get it on my cell phone then. I will be here until 4:00 pm.

The demand fee is an opportunity for a civil settlement. Paying it is not a requirement. If you don't pay it, they could theoretically take you to court and sue you, but there's not enough money in that for them to make it worth there while. Most lawyers will tell you that you should ignore the demand fee.

The store can, theoretically, still turn the matter over to the police and get you charged criminally. They just have to get the charges filed before the statute of limitations runs out, which gives them 1 year.

Some lawyers believe that by not paying the demand fee you are increasing the likelihood that they will charge you criminally instead. I can't be sure of that one way or the other. I have known people who have paid the demand and then been prosecuted and others who have not. It depends upon the store and their own internal shoplifting policies.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
okay can you tell me what I can do to protect myself what would you do?

Me, personally? I'd probably pay the fine. But I'm overcautious.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Okay thank you for the advice. If I end up needing criminal help can I use you ?

JustAnswer's not a law firm, so we lawyers cannot actually represent customers. However, if you're asking whether you can come back to me on this site with a follow up or a new question if you're charged, yes, you can do that.

I strive for 5-star service. If I have addressed all of your concerns, please take the time to rate my service to you by selecting 5 stars on the rating scale, as a rating of okay or better is the only way that JustAnswer will give us Experts credit for our work. You would still be able to post further follow-ups on this question thread about this for no additional cost, even after I've been rated.

Zoey, JD
Zoey, JD, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 31,426
Experience: Active member of the NYS bar since 1989
Verified
Zoey, JD and 87 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
what is the best way to find a good Attorney for a fair price if I need it. thanks Frank
You will get the best rating don't worry.

Contact the California Bar Association's Lawyer Referral Service and tell them what you need. They will charge a fee of about $50 for the referral which will include a free half hour consultation with the lawyer.

http://apps.americanbar.org/legalservices/lris/directory/main.cfm?id=CA

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