Many people see shoplifting as a minor offense as compared to violent crimes. Stealing from a big box store may even be considered a “victimless crime” to those who commit retail theft. However, Illinois law does not take retail theft lightly. Individuals convicted of retail theft may face misdemeanor or felony charges. The severity of the charge and the associated criminal penalties are based on the value of the goods allegedly stolen and the defendant’s criminal history.
As retail theft becomes increasingly frequent, stores are ramping up their efforts to catch offenders and bring them to justice. Unfortunately, this sometimes means that the wrong person is accused of theft. If you or a loved one were charged with retail theft, contact a lawyer for help right away to start building a defense against the charges.