Each 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.
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.
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:
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.