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Criminal Law/Shop lifting at Shop Rite

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Question
Hi! I got caught shoplifting at ShopRite (New Jersey) yesterday for 2 lipsticks costing to $18.00. I bought a lot of groceries, paid for everything but was followed by a security personnel and was asked to come back inside the store. I was told to give back the item that were not paid. I did! I felt so sorry, and so remorseful for what I did. First time offender, and have no criminal record. I am so at fault, and offered no excuse for it. No cops were called and was told that they will give restitution for the offense and just wait for a letter in the mail.
Will I be given any criminal offense or record...will I be summoned to appear in Court and also do community service? I am still in shock and is so scared...please help!
I won't condone what I did, I will not even try to find an excuse. I am wrong, and has to face the consequence...please help!

Answer
Marie-

New Jersey is one of the few states in the country that does not have a "Suspended Imposition of Sentence" or "Deferred Prosecution" for exactly what you just described. You can simply plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge like this and then request it be expunged at some later date - usually, 3-5 years.

Did you sign anything admitting guilt or did they video/audio record you admitting that you stole the items instead of simply forgetting to pay for them? Did they take a picture of you?

By not calling the police, ShopRite has no formal police report nor do they have your fingerprints. Therefore, you may have a little wiggle room on the charge.

Wait for the letter, if it doesn't come, nothing to worry about. If it does comes, check with an attorney about your options.

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Kevin M. Tamez

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Kevin M. Tamez serves as one of the most senior and experienced consultants at The MPM Group, Inc. During more than 27 years of both state and federal law enforcement experience, Mr. Tamez held supervisory roles with state law enforcement as well as senior management positions with the U.S. Department of Justice - serving in both domestic as well as foreign posts. In addition to his extensive foreign operational experience, Mr. Tamez is a court adjudicated expert in most Title 18 and Title 21 complex criminal, undercover, and electronic (Title III) intercept investigations. As a senior manager, he is also an authority in most government administrative matters to include Human Resource and Workers’ Compensation issues. Mr. Tamez has broadened his already considerable expertise by authoring various legal reference and inmate advocacy manuals. Mr. Tamez is frequently sought after for his expertise in counseling and preparing convicted law enforcement personnel, politicians, and other “celebrities” for reporting to a federal penal facility.

Experience

More than 27-years of both state and federal law enforcement. Uniform patrol, Tactical Operations, SWAT, Detective Bureau (Narcotics), and Uniform Supervision. U.S. Federal Agent (Series-1811), all facets of complex domestic investigations, Special Operations, Paramilitary operations overseas, senior management, strategic planning, etc.

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Mr. Tamez has authored several formal "Position Papers" as well as several legal reference manuals to include “The Pre-Release/Post-Release Process for Federal Inmates," “Medical Issues for Federal Inmates,” and “The Administrative Remedy Process for Federal Inmates,” thereby establishing himself as one of this industry’s foremost authorities in BOP procedural and administrative matters as well. In addition to his recent legal reference manuals and other professional publications, Mr. Tamez recently authored the critically acclaimed “The BOP’s Failure to Properly Implement the 2nd Chance Act of 2007” as well as the educational website www.FederalPrisonCampTour.com.

Education/Credentials
Mr. Tamez holds a Bachelor's of Arts Degree and has done graduate work at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Mr. Tamez is a graduate of the Northern Virginia Criminal Justice Academy and both the Basic & Advanced Special Agent courses in Quantico Virginia.

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