Shoplifting or petty theft is a frequently occurring offense in Ohio that is committed by people from all walks of life. Essentially, shoplifting or petty theft entails taking another person’s property against their will. Shoplifting or petty theft offenses are considered crimes of moral turpitude, which means that they are acts that are considered dishonest or against the good standards of justice in the community.
People have very different reasons for why the steal. Regardless of whether you get a thrill out of stealing, are in financial need or just wanted to have a particular item, shoplifting or petty theft is a serious criminal offense that carries severe consequences that will haunt you for the rest of your life.
Shoplifting or petty theft can be defined according to the Ohio Revised Code (ORC 2913.02) as purposefully depriving another person of their property and knowingly taking control by in any of the following:
- Without the consent of the owner or person authorized to give consent;
- Beyond the scope of the express or implied consent of the owner or person authorized to give consent;
- Through deception;
- By threat; or
- By intimidation.
Penalties for Petty Theft
You will face a petty theft conviction if the amount stolen was $1,000 or less.
A petty theft conviction is considered a first degree misdemeanor. This entails up to six months in jail and fines of up to $1,000.
If you stole more than $1,000, you will face a felony theft charge.
In addition to jail time and fines, a petty theft conviction will also be on your permanent criminal record. A shoplifting or petty theft conviction carries a serious stigma as well as additional negative consequences that will affect your personal as well as social life. You may also face difficulty keeping or finding a job, financial trouble, difficulty pursuing an education, trouble keeping or making friends and difficulty maintaining custody of your children.
If you are arrested or charged with shoplifting or petty theft, it is imperative that you immediately consult with an experienced criminal attorney as soon as possible.