What to do if I was stopped for shoplifting at 2 different supermarkets (within the same chain) twice within 6 months?

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What to do if I was stopped for shoplifting at 2 different supermarkets (within the same chain) twice within 6 months?

Both times, the total was under $15. I am mortified and currently seeing a therapist, as this is so out of character and I do not want to ever do this again. I was lucky that the police were not called either time, but I am in a panic. What will happen to me? Is it likely that the store has a database for repeat offenders and they will show up to arrest me? Can they press charges once I leave the store? I am a wreck.

Asked on July 21, 2013 under Criminal Law, New York

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You won't be arrested.  You will receive a letter from the store requiring you to pay an amount considerably larger than the amount of the items you took.  If you pay the amount requested in the letter by the deadline stated in the letter, that will end the matter.  If you don't pay by the deadline stated in the letter, the letter will probably state that the store will pursue legal action.  The letter might include a statement about being banned from that particular store if that is the store's policy in this type of case.


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