Can Shoplifting Result In A Long-Term Criminal Record?
Some people do not take shoplifting seriously. This is especially true when the item taken is small or cheap. They merely see it as a short trip to the shop’s administrative office or perhaps a half-hearted warning to never do the act again. While the former is possible as long as the shop decides not to press charges against the offender, it is still considered a misdemeanor and must be dealt with in accordance with the law.
If you ever get involved in shoplifting and are arrested, your most feasible and efficient option is to contact the best criminal defense attorney in Philadelphia. We know how to defend our clients and will ensure that you don’t go through the process alone.
Does shoplifting result in a permanent or long-term criminal record? This article will serve as your guide on shoplifting and its legal consequences.
What Is Shoplifting?
Shoplifting is defined as the unlawful removal of items or merchandise from an establishment without payment. There is intent on the part of the perpetrator to deprive the owners of the stolen items. Otherwise known as retail theft, there are other means by which this act is committed:
- Concealing or hiding such items within your person while you are still within the store’s premises
- Removing security tags to avoid triggering security devices
- Removing products from the packaging
- Altering price tags
These acts are considered shoplifting and will be dealt with in accordance with the law of the state.
Will A Shoplifting Conviction Reflect In My Records?
If the court convicts you of shoplifting and its corresponding penalties, it will go on your criminal record. However, your acquittal will not taint your records, public or private. This is where you’ll need the best Philadelphia criminal defense lawyer. You don’t have to suffer a permanent criminal record for shoplifting.
Having a past shoplifting criminal record may affect your educational, career, renting, and loaning opportunities. While all may be forgiven after serving your sentence, criminal records can impede a person’s success.
What Are My Remedies For The Criminal Record?
In Philadelphia, you can expunge a shoplifting charge. You can apply for expungement of your criminal records when:
- You were charged but were not convicted of any offense, including summary, felony, or misdemeanor.
- You were convicted but have been granted liberty from prosecution or arrest for at least five years.
- You went through a program, thereby becoming eligible for probation without conviction.
You have to meet these requirements before you can have your records expunged. Otherwise, you’ll need the assistance of experienced lawyers to help you prevent a conviction.
How To Avoid Permanent Criminal Charges
Brennan Law Offices has experienced and seasoned criminal defense attorneys with great track records and feedback from clients. They are well-versed in criminal law and focused on assisting clients with every legal issue they face. Our firm fights tirelessly for our clients.