You got a call to come down to the police station. Your daughter or son is facing shoplifting charges. Now what?
A lot of families have gone through what you are going through now. Shoplifting is a fairly common teenage criminal offense. That doesn't mean it's not serious. Businesses are cracking down on shoplifting offenses and pushing for harsher penalties. You child needs a good lawyer and a strong defense.
I am juvenile crimes defense attorney Matthew Maddox. I'm passionate about protecting the rights and futures of young people in McKinney, Texas, and the surrounding communities of Plano, Frisco and Allen. As a parent myself, I understand how young people can make stupid mistakes because of peer pressure or poor judgment. Those mistakes shouldn't limit their future. I'll fight to see that it doesn't. Call my office today: 972-546-2496
When Shoplifting Becomes a Serious Crime
A single incident of shoplifting certainly does not make your child a criminal. If it's a first offense and the theft was small, the path from disaster to never thinking of it again can be short. Misdemeanor crimes committed by teenagers is why pretrial diversion programs were created. I'll explain what you can expect and advocate for your child with the judge and prosecutor.
If your son or daughter is facing a misdemeanor shoplifting charge, even if he or she is 17 and being charged in an adult court, there is usually a way to fix it without damaging his or her future. When we meet, I can explain how the courts handle these cases, as well as plea bargain and defense strategies.
Shoplifting charges become much more difficult to defend if multiple teens (3 or more) went into the store together and shoplifted, or went from store to store and shoplifted, or if the merchandise that was shoplifted was of higher value. Then it begins to look like a criminal gang and a zealous prosecutor can make a stronger case for severe penalties.
Perceptions matter, especially the prosecutor's perception.
It's common for teens to hang out together. That does not make them a gang. And if they egged each other on to shoplift, that does not mean they were “organized.” It means they were kids doing the kind of stupid things kids sometimes do. How the prosecutor understands the facts of the case will determine the charges brought and the penalties your child could face.
Some young people are engaged in organized shoplifting rings. Some young people do have a history of shoplifting and their merchandise gets costlier over time. Now your child's freedom is on the line and you need powerful legal defense.
Contact a Juvenile Crimes Lawyer for Immediate Help
Call Maddox Law at 972-546-2496 or contact me online. I fight vigorously for my clients every step of the way, using every tactic at my disposal to get them the best result possible. There's nothing too small to fight if it will improve the disposition of your case.
Come into my office to talk. Most parents leave with a lot more understanding of the juvenile justice system and with hope for their teenager's future.