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Category Archives: Theft

Wheaton criminal defense attorneyWhen someone is thought to be shoplifting, there are a variety of officials that may become involved. In a mall or retail store setting, the first-responders typically include store employees, store management, and any security officers retained by the establishment. After they have the suspicious person detained, the local police officers then become involved. Just as with police making an arrest, personnel must complete a series of actions before creating a case.

Before Detaining a Suspect

It is important to understand your rights if you are being detained by store personnel or a security officer for shoplifting. Often, these employees overstep their authority, typically either out of their ignorance of what they can do legally or because they are relying on your naiveté of the situation. If they detain a suspect without probable cause, they are opening themselves up for false arrest claims. Therefore, before apprehending anyone, they must:

  • See the item belonging to the store, not brought in from outside the location;
  • Watch that concealment occurs;
  • Never lose visual of the individual;
  • Witness failure to pay for the merchandise; and
  • Observe the citizen leaving the store.

Taking Custody of Suspect

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Wheaton criminal defense attorney, stealing a car, Illinois car theftOne of the key elements in charging most crimes is the intent of the person accused of committing the crime. When a crime is committed, your intention can make all the difference—not only with regard to the crimes you are charged with, but also in what the prosecutor will be able to prove in court. One area where intent is particularly important is when a car goes missing.

What is Car Theft? 

In Illinois, car theft is handled under the state’s general theft law. There is not a special statute for motor vehicle theft. The theft statute requires the intention to permanently deprive the rightful owner of the use or the benefit of the property. Permanently depriving the owner of the use or the benefit of a car may take many different forms. Taking a car and selling it to someone else would be considered theft. Taking a car and then driving it into a lake would also be considered theft. Both of these actions show that there was an intention to permanently deprive the owner of his or her car.

What is Joyriding?

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Wheaton criminal defense lawyer, retail theft, shopliftingMost people would consider shoplifting to be a minor crime, but even small time theft like shoplifting can have serious consequences. Shoplifting and other types of retail theft involves more than just taking something without paying for it.

Different Types of Retail Theft

Illinois does not have a statute titled shoplifting. Instead, shoplifting is classified under the retail theft provisions of the law. The statute makes it illegal to take or obtain merchandise from a retail establishment with the full retail value of the merchandise.

This means that retail theft is more than just taking something and leaving the store without paying for it. Actions such as price switching, exchanging merchandise that was stolen, or trying to confuse a cashier and get the wrong change back are additional forms of retail theft.

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