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Retail Theft in Illinois Encompasses Much More Than Just Stealing

on in Retail Theft
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IL defense lawyerEach year, inventory shrinkage due to theft or shoplifting causes the U.S. retail industry to lose over $45 billion. This is why most stores have placed an increased focus on loss prevention strategies. In the state of Illinois, retail theft is taken very seriously and comes with severe consequences. If you get caught trying to shoplift an item, the situation is not as easy to resolve as just paying for the item and going on your way. If you are caught shoplifting, you will be charged with retail theft, which can easily turn into a felony, depending on the circumstances of your case.

General Definition

When you think of retail theft, you probably think of the first definition of retail theft in the Illinois Penal Code. According to the code, a person commits retail theft when he or she takes possession of any merchandise in a retail establishment with the intention of retaining the merchandise and permanently depriving the retail establishment of the merchandise without paying for it. General retail theft is a Class A misdemeanor, which carries a penalty of up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500. While this is the most common form of retail theft, it does come in other forms.

Other Retail Theft

Contrary to what many people may believe, there is more than one form of retail theft. In Illinois, the following offenses are also punished as retail theft:

  • Price Switching: This occurs when a person alters, transfers or removes the label or price tag of an item and then attempts to purchase the item at a price lower than the actual value of the item.
  • Under-ringing: This mostly applies to employees of retail establishments, but can also apply to customers at self-service cash registers. If you ring up an item for less than the full retail value or you falsely apply discounts or coupons, you have committed retail theft.
  • Fraudulent Returns: If you try to return an item that you do not lawfully own to receive cash, gift cards or store credit, you have committed retail theft.
  • Using or Possessing a Theft Detection Shielding Device: If you attempt to use or even just possess a theft detection shielding device, you can be charged with retail theft.

Contact a Skilled Oak Brook Retail Theft Defense Attorney

If you have been charged with any type of retail theft -- whether it is a misdemeanor or felony charge -- the skilled lawyers at Myers Law LLC can help. Retail theft is a serious charge that can turn from a misdemeanor charge to a felony charge very quickly. Typically, convictions for these charges cannot be expunged or sealed, so it is important that you avoid a conviction at all costs. Our skilled DuPage County retail theft defense lawyers can help you form a solid defense. Call our office today at 844-984-3529 to schedule a free phone consultation.





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