The New Jersey Shoplifting Law is contained at N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11. The grade of criminal offense that a shoplifting charge will trigger is contingent upon the value of the merchandise allegedly stolen. In this regard, the statute provides as follows:
- It is a Disorderly Persons Offense where the value of the merchandise is $200 or less;
- It is a Fourth Degree Crime where the value of the merchandise is between $200 and $500;
- It is a Third Degree Crime where the value of the merchandise is between $500 and $75,000; and
- It is a Second Degree Crime where the value of the merchandise is in excess of $75,000.
Types of “Shoplifting” under N.J.S.A. 2C:20-11
- Purposely taking possession of merchandise and attempting to carry it away;
- Concealing merchandise for the purpose of depriving the merchant of its value;
- Altering labeling in order to manipulate the value of the merchandise; and
- Under-ringing the value of merchandise.
Municipal Courts have taken a very strict sentencing approach on shop lifting offenses and, it is my firm opinion, if you have been charged, please contact a lawyer to protect your rights before you become jammed up and are paying high fnes and court costs.
Jason Charles Matey, LLC
20 S. Main Street, Suite 2A
Lambertville, NJ 08530