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To be arrested for shoplifting in AL do you have to leave the store with the items?

Saraland, AL |

I'm living through hard times and was gonna shoplift some items I needed but was putting the items back on the shelf when I was grabbed by a local police officer inside the store who said "don't put it back just because you saw me coming" which I didn't because I was not looking behind me. The officer and store clerk were all of a sudden there and they arrested me and I was told not to come back to the store.

Attorney Answers 4

Posted

No, it's called asportation. You don't have to have exited the store to be able to be found guilty of shoplifting in Alabama.

As always, I recommend that you contact a local, experienced criminal defense lawyer to discuss your particular situation.

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1 comment

Patrick Mahaney

Patrick Mahaney

Posted

"Asportation" - It is a general requirement of common law larceny that there be some "asportation" or "carrying away," but it is sufficient if the property be entirely removed from the place it occupied and be under the control of the taker for only an instant. Under Alabama's Model Penal Code, section 13A-8-2, Theft of property - "Definition" "A person commits the crime of theft of property if he or she: (1) Knowingly obtains or exerts unauthorized control over the property of another, with intent to deprive the owner of his or her property;..."

Posted

No you do not need to actually leave the store, get a criminal defense attorney to help you or ask the court to appoint a PD for you.

The above answer is for information only; and does NOT constitute legal advice. This answer does not constitute, nor does it create, an attorney-client relationship between KaplunMarx, PLLC, Theodor Kapun and any receiver. The information provided on these pages is general only, and you should not act upon this information without consulting with a qualified attorney.

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Posted

I agree with the above answers, but my experience in defending shoplifting cases, the State is going to have a very difficult time proving intent unless you made an admission at the store. You might want to consider deleting this post as well, because it contains an admission, and there is no privilege here!

Talk to a lawyer in private. Don't talk to the police. Good luck!

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Posted

I agree with the prior answers. I would add that you definitely do not want to go into court without an attorney. At the municipal court or district court level, you will not have a jury, and may not be able to properly negotiate your case, let alone try it. Jail time is possible for this offense. I suggest you retain counsel.

The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. IT IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE. The response given is based upon the limited facts presented in the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law in the States of Alabama and Nebraska. Responses are based solely on Alabama law unless stated otherwise. Attorney provides no information with regard to Federal Law except to contact an attorney who is experienced in the Federal Court of relevant jurisdiction. No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers.

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