You got caught stealing at the mall. What happens next?
When a person steals something from their local mall, grocery store, Walmart, gas station, or other retailer, they may not think about the consequences. After all, it is just a candy bar. Or maybe it is a pair of shoes. Or it could be a Rolex watch.
This is called shoplifting and it is a big deal. It is a type of theft, and theft is defined as appropriating someone’s property with the intent to deprive the owner of the property. This means that you intend to take the item permanently. You do not intend to simply borrow it or give it back.
Under Sec. 31.03 of the Texas Penal Code, appropriation is considered illegal if either of the following applies:
- It is done without the owner's consent.
- The property is stolen, and a person takes the property knowing it was stolen.
What are the Consequences in Texas?
Getting caught shoplifting is more than embarrassing. It also comes with legal repercussions that can be serious in nature. The penalties for shoplifting depend on the value of the property. The higher the value, the more severe the penalties.
- When the value is less than $100, it is a Class C misdemeanor. The penalty is a $500 fine.
- When the value is between $100 and $750, it is a Class B misdemeanor. The penalties are a $2,000 fine and 180 days in jail.
- When the value is between $750 and $2,500, it is a Class A misdemeanor. The penalties are a $4,000 fine and one year in jail.
- When the value is between $2,500 and $30,000, it is a state jail felony. The penalties are a $10,000 fine and up to two years in jail.
- When the value is between $30,000 and $150,000, it is a third-degree felony. The penalties are a $10,000 fine and up to 10 years in prison.
- When the value is between $150,000 and $300,000, it is a second-degree felony. The penalties are a $10,000 fine and up to 20 years in prison.
- When the value is more than $300,000, it is a first-degree felony. The penalties are a $10,000 fine and up to 99 years in prison.
The judge has the discretion to sentence you to lighter or harsher punishment, depending on your criminal history. A lawyer can provide evidence, dispute the nature of the arrest, and even reduce or eliminate your charges. Make sure to get the best defense possible.
Contact Our Travis County Shoplifting Defense Lawyers Today
Shoplifting is a type of theft that should be taken seriously. It can result in a felony, depending on the value of the stolen property.
You need to understand your legal rights so you can avoid serious repercussions. Seek legal help from the Travis County criminal defense attorneys at Granger and Mueller PC. A shoplifting charge can follow you forever. We can provide you with skilled representation. Call (512) 474-9999 or fill out the online form to schedule a consultation.