Contact Our Former Prosecutors & Accomplished Shoplifting Defense Lawyers If You Were Charged in Secaucus, Jersey City, North Bergen, Bayonne, Kearny & Anywhere Else In Hudson County New Jersey
Shoplifting charges are frequently encountered by our Hudson County criminal attorneys, especially in Secaucus, North Bergen and Jersey City where major box stores like Target, Walmart, Lowes and Home Depot are located. There are also a high number of retail thefts that arise in the area malls, including Newport Centre, Hudson Mall, The Plaza at Harmon Meadow and the Secaucus Outlets. If you were arrested and charged with shoplifting in these or any other location in Hudson County, it would be wise for you to take the next step and contact an experienced defense attorney at our firm.
An individual convicted of shoplifting faces serious consequences, including a lengthy period of incarceration, community service, high fines and even the possibility of deportation if they are not a citizen. As if these potential ramifications were not enough, an individual also has the stigma of having a criminal record for stealing. All of these factors make it essential to enlist a knowledgeable shoplifting lawyer so you have the best chance of avoiding a conviction.
Our Highly Skilled Shoplifting Attorneys In Hudson County Are Ready To Help You
The team of lawyers at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have the skill and experience that you need with over 150 years in practice, including decades serving as prosecutors. To take advantage of the opportunity to discuss your charge with a lawyer who has successfully handled countless shoplifting charges in NJ, call (201) 309-0500. Initial consultations are free and we defend shoplifting throughout Hudson County, including:
- Jersey City Shoplifting Attorney. Jersey City is unquestionably the busiest municipality in Hudson County for shoplifting as the home of several local malls such as Newport Centre, Hudson Mall and Newport Plaza, as well as major retailers like Kohl’s, Macy’s, Target, JCPenney and Sears. The presence of so many shopping destinations results in hundreds of 2C:20-11 disorderly persons charges heard in Jersey City Municipal Court annually. The city also happens to be the home to the county courthouse so there are also many felony third degree and fourth degree crimes for shoplifting heard within the jurisdiction.
- Secaucus NJ Shoplifting Lawyers. Secaucus also has a significant number of shoplifting charges processed within its borders each year. The primary reason why the town has such a surprisingly high amount of arrests of this nature is the fact that it is the home to the Secaucus Outlets, Harmon Meadow Mall and stores that include Home Depot, Kohl’s and Walmart Supercenter. This all translates into plenty of disorderly persons offenses and indictable felony charges for shoplifting in Secaucus.
- North Bergen Shoplifting Defense Attorneys. Retail destinations in North Bergen include Lowes, Home Depot, Walmart Supercenter and Target so it makes sense that the municipal court in the town has considerable shoplifting cases. Merchants and police also have occasion to file many crimes of the third degree and fourth degree for retail theft. If you were arrested for shoplifting in North Bergen, you clearly are among many that face this charge.
- Kearny NJ Shoplifting Lawyer
- Bayonne Shoplifting Attorney
Shoplifting Offense Under N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11
The statute governing the offense of shoplifting in New Jersey is N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11. This law is much more complex and serious than most individuals charged with shoplifting appreciate until they are deep into a case. The headings below attempt to clarify some of the more important aspects of a shoplifting charge.
What Does The Prosecutor Have To Prove In Order To Convict You Of Shoplifting?
Before a defendant can be convicted of shoplifting in New Jersey, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant:
- Removed merchandize from a store without paying for the merchandize;
- Concealed merchandize with the intent of trying to steal the merchandize;
- Altered a price tag and/or package with the intent of ultimately stealing the merchandize in question;
- Engaged in a scheme to under-ring merchandise at a register(s).
How Is The Severity Of A Shoplifting Offense Determined?
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11b, shoplifting can be either a disorderly person offense (misdemeanor) that is dealt with in municipal court or an indictable crime of the second, third or fourth degree that can only be heard at the Hudson County Superior Court in Jersey City. The value of the merchandize stolen dictates where a shoplifting charge falls within this grading. Here is a break down on how shoplifting charges are graded under New Jersey law:
- Second Degree Shoplifting: Merchandize has a value of $75,000 or more
- Third Degree Shoplifting: Merchandize has a value of at least $500 but less than $75,000
- Fourth Degree Shoplifting: Merchandize has a value at least $200 but less than $500
- Disorderly Persons Offense: Merchandize has a value of less than $200
Will I Have A Criminal Record If I Fail To Secure An Acquittal For Shoplifting?
You will absolutely have a criminal record if you are convicted of shoplifting in Secaucus, North Bergen, Jersey City, Kearny, Bayonne or any other municipal court in Hudson County. The same is the case if you fail to secure an acquittal for an offense involving a third degree crime or fourth degree crime for shoplifting at the Superior Court. A skilled attorney can assist you, however, in avoiding such an outcome. They can not only attack the case in hopes of securing a dismissal or finding of not guilty, but also utilize diversionary programs like Pretrial Intervention or Conditional Dismissal to avert the penalties and record that come with a shoplifting conviction. The original shoplifting charge is dismissed upon successful completion of the probationary period that comes with these first time offender programs.
What Are The Penalties For Shoplifting?
In addition to the negative impact of a theft conviction, there are serious penalties that are triggered. A disorderly persons offense for shoplifting results in up to 6 months in the Hudson County Jail and a fine of up to $1,000. There is a prison term of up to 18 months and a fine that can reach $10,000 for fourth degree shoplifting. A third degree crime for shoplifting carries 3-5 years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000. The most severe form of shoplifting is a second degree crime that carries 5-10 years in prison and a $150,000 fine.
In addition to potential jail/prison terms mentioned above, a third conviction for a disorderly persons offense for shoplifting carries with it a mandatory minimum sentence of ninety (90) days.
You should also know that anyone convicted of shoplifting must perform community service. The term is at least 10 days for a first offense, at least 15 days for a second offense and a maximum of 25 days for a third or subsequent offense.
Why Was I Also Charged With Robbery Even Though I Was Only Attempting To Shoplift?
Unfortunately, a basic shoplifting offense (e.g. disorderly persons offense involves less than $200) can quickly escalates into a second degree robbery if any form of physical contact or even resistance is utilized in an attempt to escape. All it really takes is a simple push to get away from a security officer turn an otherwise minor shoplifting into a robbery.
Hudson County NJ Shoplifting Attorneys
If you or a loved one has been charged with the offense of shoplifting in Hudson County, it is imperative that you seek the advice of an experienced retail theft defense attorney. At the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, we have been defending individuals charged with shoplifting, theft of moveable property, receiving stolen property and even robbery in Hudson County for over 150 years between the criminal attorneys on our staff. As you can tell from above, the potential penalties are severe for shoplifting in Jersey City, Secaucus, Bayonne, North Bergen, Kearny or another local vicinage. The highly knowledgeable shoplifting defense lawyers in our Jersey City Office will make sure that the essential evidence like surveillance videos are subpoenaed immediately and every possible hole in the case against you is exploited. To speak to a lawyer immediately without obligation, call (201) 309-0500.