If my son is being charged with shoplifting, how far can the DA take this without any actual evidence?

UPDATED: Jan 27, 2015

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If my son is being charged with shoplifting, how far can the DA take this without any actual evidence?

Store security pulled him into their office and questioned him but found no stolen property. The local police called the next day and said he was to receive a citation for shoplifting but had no smoking gun just hearsay.

Asked on January 27, 2015 under Criminal Law, Wisconsin


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Eyewitness testimony is not hearsay, and people can be charged, or even convicted, based solely on witness testimony--especially in theft cases, where the stolen goods may be lost, disposed of, destroyd, etc. Also, if your son was spotted trying to shoplift, even if he was stopped in the act or put the stuff back after taking it, because he was worried about being caught, he could potentially be charged with "attempted" theft or shoplifting.

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