When you walk into a store, the employees and owner of that shop likely don’t expect that you’re going to try to take something without paying the asking price. Unfortunately, some businesses regularly deal with people trying to steal from them. Shoplifting is a serious problem for some stores.
There are many different things that constitute shoplifting. The key point between all of these is that someone tries to take merchandise from the store without giving the store what it’s due. This might be done by trying to conceal the items or by changing the price tags on them. Interestingly, merely concealing merchandise, even if you aren’t caught trying to walk out of the store is considered shoplifting.
The value of the merchandise is what determines the charge and penalty you’re facing in Texas. Some cases are misdemeanors, others are felonies.
- Up to $100: Class C misdemeanor, up to $500 fine
- $100 up to $750: Class B misdemeanor, up to 180 days in jail, up to $2,000 fine
- $750 up to $2,500: Class A misdemeanor, up to 1 year in jail, up to $4,000 fine
- $2,500 up to $30,000: State jail felony, 180 days to 2 years in jail, up to $10,000 fine
- $30,000 up to $150,000: Third degree felony, 2 to 10 years in prison, up to $10,000 fine
- $150,000 up to $300,000: Second degree felony, 2 to 20 years in prison, up to $10,000 fine
- More than $300,000: First degree felony, 5 to 99 years, up to $10,000 fine
As you can see, shoplifting can be a very serious crime. You should consult your attorney to find out what defense options you have against these charges.