Today I was caught shoplifting at Albertson's for goods worth $11.82.
LP didn't call the cops and let me go, however, she scanned my school ID
(has my picture, school name, & Student ID Number) & said that I'll
receive a civil demand letter and have to pay restitution fees. I also
signed a paper saying my intent was to steal. Will this action of shoplifting
up on my criminal background / record after paying the fee? I just turned
18 years old 3 months ago.
Do I have to pay the free when I receive the civil demand letter?
No police equals no criminal record . Consensus among Avvo attorneys is to ignore civil demand letter.
ANDREW ROBERTS CRIMINAL AND TRAFFIC TICKET DEFENSE ATTORNEY
If you were not given a citation to appear in court, then it's unlikely you will get a criminal charge on your record. However, you may be sent a citation down the road. Until then, don't worry about.
As for the civil demand, if/when you receive, contact an attorney to discuss your options at that point. My guess is, once you get it, you will be charged around $450-$500 for ATTEMPTING to steal from Albertsons. (If you were caught, I assume good were recovered). It's not always logical to pay that civil demand as it has no effect on the criminal case and is often mass-mailed to bait people into paying them. It's usually unlikely anything negative will come from ignoring it as it would turn into a small claims actions and will likely not be worth the hassle to recover that amount.
As I said, once you get that demand, call an attorney and discuss how to proceed.
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If the police were not involved, there will be no criminal record.
The above answer is for general information only and is based on the information you posted. Every case is fact dependent, so to get a thorough analysis of your situation, you will need to consult face to face with an attorney licensed to practice in the jurisdiction where the incident took place. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case.