If my friend was been caught shoplifting but the police were not called, does she have a criminal record?

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If my friend was been caught shoplifting but the police were not called, does she have a criminal record?

She took coleslaw, breaded chicken and bread. When she was caught they took her into a little room and filled in a form detailing what she had taken and her details, and asked her to sign it. Afterwards they said that she was banned from all of their stores and told her that if she came back she would be prosecuted and charged with trespassing.

Asked on May 8, 2012 under Criminal Law, New York

Answers:

Richard Southard / Law Office of Richard Southard

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Since she was not arrested, she does not have a criminal record.  Some private security firms collect information in a private database about shoplifters so there may be a record of this incident that shows up at some point.  Keep in mind that the Statute of Limitations on this incident is two years so in theory the police could still arrest her and chare her with this crime; although, it's less likely to occur since they haven't done so already. 

Michael Doyle

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

A criminal record comes in two forms.  There is the record of the arrest.  There is also the record of the conviction.  It seems she was neither arrested nor criminally charge.  Therefore, she should not have a record (at least for this incident.


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