Protect Your Rights
A charge of shoplifting is serious and can be either a misdemeanor or a felony. Reckless driving is a criminal misdemeanor. If you are convicted, you will have a criminal record. This could effect your current or future employment. If you have been charged with shoplifting, you should contact a knowledgeable attorney now, before your court date, to discuss your case and determine your best course of action.
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To protect your rights you need a knowledgeable defense team that can review and challenge the government’s case. Our attorneys have 20 years of extensive experience in defending clients in all state and federal courts. We have the ability to evaluate the strength of the prosecutor’s case, and how to negotiate for lesser charges or obtain alternative sentencing options. In the event a resolution acceptable to the client is not available, the firm has extensive and successful experience in defending criminal cases at the trial and appeal level.
Shoplifting is a Serious Charge
Section 18.2-103 of the Code of Virginia defines the offense of shoplifting as:
“Whoever, without authority, with the intention of converting goods or merchandise to his own or another’s use without having paid the full price thereof, or of defrauding the owner of the value of the goods or merchandise:
- willfully conceals or takes possession of the goods or merchandise of any store or mercantile establishment.
- alters the price tag or other price marking on such goods or merchandise, or transfers the goods from one container to another.
- counsels, assists, aids, or abets another in the performance of any of the above acts, when the value of the goods or merchandise involved in the offense is less than $200, shall be guilty of petit larceny and, when the value of the goods or merchandise involved in the offense is $200 or more, shall be guilty of grand larceny.”
Shoplifting may be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on what the prosecution believes to be the value of the allegedly stolen item. In Virginia, the theft of property valued at more than $200 is considered felony grand larceny. Grand larceny is punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
Theft of property valued at less than $200 is considered petit larceny, which is a misdemeanor in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Petit larceny carries a maximum sentence of one year in jail and a potential fine of up to $2,500.
A criminal conviction can, of course, lead to the loss of employment or the inability to obtain a job. Students at UVA may face honor charges and possible expulsion.
A person younger than 18 years old at the time of the charge will likely have his or her case heard in a Virginia Juvenile Court. A person 18 years old or younger who is charged in the City of Charlottesville, for instance, would have his or her case heard in the Charlottesville Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court located at 411 East High Street, Charlottesville, VA 22902
A person 18 years old or older at the time of the charge will have his or her case heard in the General District Court. A person 18 years or older charged in the City of Charlottesville, for instance, would have his or her case heard in the Charlottesville General District Court located at 606 E Market St, Charlottesville, VA 22902.
If you are facing criminal allegations, we are prepared to stand up for your rights. Call us today at (434) 972-9600 or contact us online.
Please note that the use of our contact form does not create an attorney-client relationship and therefore there is no attorney-client protection for the information you choose to submit to us. As such, please do not submit any confidential or privileged information in the contact form.
We are located in Charlottesville, but our lawyers handle cases in Charlottesville, Albemarle County, Greene County, Fluvanna County, Louisa County, Nelson County, Madison County, Orange County, Roanoke, Harrisonburg, Staunton, Waynesboro, Augusta County, and across Virginia.
Davidson & Kitzmann, PLC
211 E. High Street
Charlottesville, VA 22902
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