Cook County and the Chicago area are above national averages in all criminal statistics and especially theft crimes. With the population size and diversity of communities, the variety of crime and frequency of offenses is high.
Theft Crimes are Some of the Most Perpetrated Crimes in Cook County.
Theft crimes include shoplifting and retail theft crimes (720 ilcs 5/16-25), general theft (720 ilcs 5/16-1), identity theft (720 ilcs 5/16-30) and online theft offenses (720 ilcs 5/16-40). These offenses range from misdemeanor offenses punishable by up to a year in jail, all the way to a Class X felony punishable by 6-30 years in prison.
Retail theft is defined as a person who takes possession of, carries away, transfers or causes to be carried away or transferred any merchandise displayed, held, stored or offered for sale in a retail mercantile establishment with the intention of retaining such merchandise or with the intention of depriving the merchant permanently of the possession, use or benefit of such merchandise without paying the full retail value of such merchandise. With shoplifting and retail theft charges, the most common places these offenses occur are at mercantile establishments.
Being charged with retail theft, shoplifting and other theft offenses are frightening to confront on your own. The Law Office of Purav Bhatt has the experience and knowledge to guide you through the criminal process to achieve the best outcome for your case.
If you have not reviewed the possible sentences for theft offenses, you may be shocked to find that the penalties can be very harsh. The severity of your charge will be based on the value of the items taken. If the value is under $300 then you will be charged with a Class A misdemeanor and a fine of up to $2500. If the value of the items taken is over $300, then you will be charged with a felony offense that can have consequences including prison, a permanent criminal record, fines of up to $25,000 and immigration consequences.
Should I Hire an Attorney?
If you have been charged with a theft offense, you should have an attorney advise you as to what your options are what the best way to handle your case is. Having the right attorney can be the difference between having a permanent record and not having one, avoiding jail or prison and preventing deportation.
If you have a clean criminal record, an attorney may be able to convince the prosecutor to dismiss the charges against you or work out a deferred prosecution that will ultimately lead to a dismissal of all charges against you.
Get an Experienced Chicago Shoplifting Attorney on Your Side.
The Law Office of Purav Bhatt can discuss your options and lay out a defense to your case that can protect you or your loved one’s future. Call 773-791-9682.
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