Proudly Serving the People of South Carolina
Facing shoplifting charges can be a daunting experience, and having a skilled legal professional by your side is crucial. At the Law Office of Patrick C. Sharpe, our Columbia shoplifting lawyer, we are committed to fighting for you and your rights. We are here to deliver a strong defense and guide you through the legal process.
Call the Law Office of Patrick C. Sharpe today at (803) 721-4615 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with our shoplifting lawyer in Columbia.
Shoplifting involves taking merchandise from a store without paying for it or altering price tags to pay less than the item's actual value. This act is considered theft and is taken seriously under South Carolina law. Shoplifting can occur in various ways, such as concealing items, manipulating barcodes, or simply walking out of a store without paying.
In South Carolina, the penalties for shoplifting can vary depending on factors such as the value of the stolen items, any prior criminal record, and the specific circumstances of the offense. Generally, shoplifting is classified as a misdemeanor, but in certain situations, it can escalate to a felony.
- For misdemeanor shoplifting, penalties may include fines, probation, community service, and, in some cases, a brief jail sentence.
- Felony shoplifting, typically involving higher-value items or multiple offenses, can result in more severe consequences, including longer jail sentences and higher fines.
In addition to the criminal penalties, shoplifting convictions can have long-lasting effects on your life. A criminal record can harm your reputation, limit job opportunities, and even affect your housing options.
Some common defenses against shoplifting charges may include:
- Lack of Intent: If it can be shown that you did not have the intent to steal or that it was a misunderstanding, this could be a valid defense.
- Mistaken Identity: In some cases, individuals are mistakenly identified as shoplifters. This defense involves proving that you were not the person involved in the alleged shoplifting incident.
- Faulty Surveillance or Evidence: Challenging the reliability of surveillance footage or other evidence presented by the prosecution can be a viable defense strategy.
- Illegal Search and Seizure: If law enforcement or store security violated your Fourth Amendment rights during the investigation, evidence obtained through an illegal search and seizure may be suppressed.
The consequences of a shoplifting conviction can be severe, and having a dedicated legal advocate is essential to protecting your rights and future. At the Law Office of Patrick C. Sharpe, our Columbia shoplifting attorney is committed to providing agressive legal representation to help you navigate the complexities of your case. Let us be your trusted ally in the pursuit of a favorable resolution.
Contact the Law Office of Patrick C. Sharpe today to get started with our Columbia shoplifting attorney.
He kept me informed about all of my options as well as ensured I received the best results.- Andre B.