Theft is a crime that is not taken lightly in the state of Colorado. There are varying degrees of theft, leaving some people to believe that certain types of stealing really aren’t a big deal. Shoplifting is a great example of this. If you are accused of shoplifting, you may find the charges against you to be more serious than you thought possible.
To be convicted on a shoplifting charge, two specific elements have to exist in your case. These two elements are that you took possession of store merchandise and you did it with the intent of taking it from the store without paying for it. Intent is the hardest part to prove. Anyone who goes into a store and places an item in a cart or shopping bag has technically taken possession of it. It is what they do after the fact that can land them in legal trouble.
In order to prove intent, prosecuting attorneys typically need to show that you did leave a store without paying for an item or that you were caught concealing an item in order to leave without making payment. If convicted based on your case meeting the required elements, you may be looking at time behind bars and you may be ordered to pay a fine. The length of your jail term and the severity of the fine will be determined by the value of the item you allegedly took.
Shoplifting may not seem like a serious or harmful offense, but it is and the consequences associated with a conviction on a shoplifting charge can have a significant impact on your personal and professional life. A experienced Colorado criminal defense attorney can help you fight for the best outcome possible. To learn how, please take a minute and visit our firm’s website.