Tue 09 Jul, 2024 Criminal Defense

How to Get Shoplifting Charges Dropped in NYC

You may be able to get your shoplifting charges dropped in NYC. The outcome of your case depends on the value of what was stolen and whether you have a criminal record.

This guide discusses typical shoplifting charges in New York City and the most common outcomes. If you are charged with shoplifting in NYC, contact Cody Warner, P.C. for a free consultation. We can evaluate your case to determine the best strategy in effort to get your charges dropped.

What is the Law on Shoplifting in New York?

Shoplifters are usually charged with Petit Larceny (P.L. 155.25). Petit Larceny occurs when a person steals property. Under NY law, a person steals property when, with intent to deprive another of property or to appropriate the same to himself or to a third person, he wrongfully takes, obtains or withholds such property from an owner thereof.

Petit Larceny is a class A misdemeanor, which carries a maximum jail sentence of up to a year.

If you stole property from a store that is worth over $1000, then you will likely be charged with grand larceny. In New York, grand larceny is a felony that comes in different degrees, based on the value of the property. Although grand larceny charges can still sometimes be dropped, they are more challenging to get dismissed compared to petit larceny.

Ways to Get Your NYC Shoplifting Charges Dropped at Arraignment

Although you may have a strong defense to your shoplifting case (for instance, if you didn’t leave the store with the property), your lawyer may be able to get your charges dropped even if you are guilty.

If you are charged with petit larceny and have never been arrested before, your lawyer may even be able to get your charges dropped at the first court appearance. The district attorney may require you to complete a short, hourlong class that teaches people to not shoplift.

Even if you have a criminal record, your lawyer may still be able to get your charges dropped to a non-criminal offense, like disorderly conduct, which is a civil infraction.

If you are facing a petit larceny charge, you likely received a desk appearance ticket, which orders you to appear in court on a future date. If that’s the case, here is are the steps you can take to get your shoplifting charges dismissed at your first court appearance.

Steps to Get Your Shoplifting Charges Dropped

  1. Hire a criminal defense lawyer. New York City has many qualified criminal defense lawyers. You should do your research and select the lawyer that you feel most comfortable with.
  2. Provide all relevant information to your lawyer. Your lawyer will ask you to provide all relevant information about you and the incident. Make sure to provide your lawyer with truthful and detailed information so that he can develop the best defense strategy for you.
  3. Appear in court on your court date. You can meet your lawyer outside of the courtroom on the day of your court appearance. Your lawyer will handle everything else for you on the day of your court appearance.
  4. Wait for your lawyer to speak to the prosecution. Your lawyer will speak to the prosecution and court before your case is called in front of the judge. If your lawyer can work out a dismissal that day, he will let you know before you go in front of the judge.
  5. Go in front of the judge with your lawyer. If your lawyer is able to get your case dismissed, you will likely go in front of the judge to hear that your case is being dismissed. If the prosecution doesn’t agree to a dismissal on the first court date, then the judge will simply adjourn the case for the prosecution to provide its evidence for the case. In the meantime, your lawyer will continue working on getting your charges dropped.

Need Help Getting a Shoplifting Charge Dropped in NYC?

If you are facing shoplifting charges in NYC, contact Cody Warner, P.C. for a free consultation. We can evaluate your case and work hard to get your charges dropped as soon as possible. If you were wrongfully arrested for shoplifting by the store security, we may even be able to sue on your behalf to get you justice.