Chattanooga Shoplifting Lawyer
Experienced Defense For Your Shoplifting Charge in Tennessee
If you or someone you know is facing shoplifting charges in Tennessee, you need an experienced and skilled shoplifting attorney to protect your rights and advocate for your interests. At Speek, Turner & Newkirk PLLC, we understand the stress and uncertainty that come with such charges and are committed to helping you navigate the legal process.
Call Speek, Turner & Newkirk PLLC today at (423) 799-3030 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with our shoplifting attorney in Chattanooga.
What is Shoplifting?
Shoplifting is considered a common criminal offense when an individual unlawfully takes or conceals merchandise from a retail establishment to deprive the store of its property. This can include hiding items in bags or clothing, switching price tags, or simply walking out of the store without paying.
What are the Penalties for Shoplifting in Tennessee?
The penalties for shoplifting in Tennessee can vary depending on the case's specific circumstances, including the value of the stolen items and whether you have prior convictions for shoplifting. Here is an overview of the potential consequences:
- Misdemeanor Shoplifting: If the value of the stolen property is less than $1,000, shoplifting is generally considered a misdemeanor offense. Conviction can result in up to 11 months and 29 days in jail and fines that can reach up to $2,500.
- Felony Shoplifting: Shoplifting can be charged as a felony if the value of the stolen property exceeds $1,000. Felony convictions carry more severe penalties, including one-year imprisonment, fines, and a permanent criminal record.
- Enhanced Penalties: If you have any prior convictions for shoplifting, the penalties for subsequent offenses can be more severe, including longer jail sentences and higher fines.
- Restitution: In addition to criminal penalties, you may be required to pay restitution to the victim, which can include reimbursing the store for the value of the stolen items and any related expenses.
- Civil Penalties: In some cases, the store may pursue civil penalties as a civil lawsuit to recover damages.
Defenses Against Shoplifting Charges
Some common defenses in shoplifting cases may include:
- Lack of Intent: Shoplifting requires intent to permanently deprive the store of its property. If it can be shown that you did not have the intent to steal, you may have a viable defense.
- Mistaken Identity: Eyewitness identifications can be unreliable, and mistaken identity is a common defense in shoplifting cases.
- Improper Search and Seizure: If evidence was obtained unlawfully through an illegal search or seizure, it may be possible to suppress that evidence, making it inadmissible in court.
- Procedural Errors: We can review the entire legal process to identify any procedural errors or violations of your rights that may have transpired during your arrest or trial.
- Negotiating a Plea Bargain: In some instances, it may be in your best interest to negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecution, which could result in reduced charges or penalties.
Contact Our Shoplifting Attorney in Chattanooga Today
At Speek, Turner & Newkirk PLLC, our team is ready to assist you. Our Chattanooga shoplifting lawyer will provide you with the legal guidance and support you need during this challenging time. Remember, you are not alone, and we are here to fight for your rights and help you move forward with your life.
Contact Speek, Turner & Newkirk PLLC today to get started with our Chatanooga shoplifting lawyer.