The law in New Jersey allows for diversion of a charge, downgrading to a less serious offense and sometimes even dismissal of a shoplifting complaint notwithstanding the fact that a theft has taken place. The typical scenario for diversion is referred to as Pretrial Intervention (PTI). The lawyers at our office explore all avenues for a favorable resolution of a shoplifting offense including dismissal or downgrading of a charge. Every defense lawyer here knows when the situation is ripe for Pretrial Intervention (PTI) and when there is an opportunity for a dismissal. Give us a call at 1-877-450-8301 and an attorney will be happy to advise you concerning dismissal, a downgrade or Pretrial Intervention (PTI) during a free consultation.
You may be surprised to learn that our lawyers are frequently successful in dismissing shoplifting complaints. While this is often a matter of persuasion rather than bona fide defense, there are also those scenarios where dismissal results from the prosecute being unable to prove his case. Our attorneys know exactly when such an opportunity exists and always do what is necessary to see that a client takes advantage of this opportunity. We also have the ability to seek dismissal based on the de minimis offense exception under N.J.S.A. 2C:2-11. This law provides for dismissal of a shoplifting offense where the conduct complained of is too trivial to warrant prosecution.
Pretrial Intervention (PTI)
An accused may avoid prosecution of a shoplifting offense where he is charged with a Third Degree or Fourth Degree shoplifting and has no prior indictable convictions on his record. Pretrial Intervention (PTI) allows for dismissal of shoplifting offenses where an individual is admitted into the program and is successful in completing six (6) months to two (2) years probation. When an individual completes PTI favorably, his or her charge is dismissed.
Plea Agreements to Downgrade a Shoplifting Offense
The majority of shoplifting cases resolve via a downgrade. Since most shoplifting involves disorderly persons offenses, the downgrade is customarily to a municipal ordinance violation. Such a charge results in no criminal record and represents an excellent opportunity for a favorable outcome.
The ultimate goal in every case is to obtain dismissal. Our attorneys certainly pursue this angle and also seek downgrade of shoplifting offenses. Pretrial intervention is also a course of action which our lawyers focus on when the situation presents itself. Please do not hesitate to contact our office if you are interested in discussing any of these potential options, have shoplifting questions or are requiring representation.