Criminal Defense Over 12 Years' Experience Protecting Your Rights

Jacksonville Shoplifting Defense Attorney

Protect Your Rights. Trust The Law Offices of Kate Mesic.

Petit theft most times is associated with retail theft. Florida Statute 812.014 defines petit theft as knowingly obtaining or using, or endeavoring to obtain or to use, the property of another with intent to, either temporarily or permanently, deprive the person of the property. Please note that the language points out that even temporarily taking someone else’s property can be considered a theft offense in Florida.

Amount Stolen or Property Value

Level of Offense

Maximum FL Penalties

Less than $100.00

2nd degree petit theft

60 days in jail / $500.00 fine

Between $100.00 – $749.00 or prior conviction

  • $750 and above is a felony

1st degree petit theft

1 year / $1000.00 fine

2 prior convictions

Will likely be charged as 3rd degree felony

5 years / $5,000 fine

Although shoplifting is sometimes labeled as a minor offense, it is a crime. If convicted, you will have a criminal record. Each and every criminal charge should be taken seriously. Please call The Law Offices of Kate Mesic for a free consultation if you or a loved one have been arrested or received a Notice to Appear for petit theft or shoplifting.

How Can Our Attorneys Help You?

A Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer can help you understand your petit theft case and what evidence exists against you. Evidence in a petit theft case a lot of times includes video from the store, testimony from an employee of the business/store where the theft allegedly took place, testimony from any witnesses, any statements or admission made by the defendant to the police or other witnesses.

This information would be obtained through the process of discovery, where the State Attorney’s Offices has to disclose what evidence they intent to use against you. A prosecutor must prove the petit theft charge beyond a reasonable doubt in order to convict you at trial – meaning proving that the person stole the property with the intent to steal.

When a person is charged with a petit theft or shoplifting, if a complete dismissal is not possible, a criminal defense attorney can explore options that maybe possible (other than jail) such as:

  • Probation
  • Counseling – take a court ordered class
  • Withholding of adjudication – not a conviction
  • Diversion program – PTI
  • Restitution in the amount of the stolen property to the store
  • Community service

Other consequences of a petit theft conviction may include:

  • A suspension of your driver license
  • Loss of academic scholarship
  • Embarrassment
  • Loss of trust by people around you

Most of these cases come up in stores like Wal-Mart and Target. Sometimes people are charged with petit theft and they did not intend to steal anything, such as when they forgot about an item in the cart. All the details of a criminal case are important to the Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer; make sure you tell your lawyer every little detail.

4 Tips to Keep in Mind When Charged with Petit Theft in Florida

*These tips apply to other criminal offenses as well.

  • Stay calm and be polite: Arguing with the police will not get you far, you can be firm in your position, but not rude. You don’t want to add fuel to the fire by getting another charge of resisting arrest added. Additionally, in most cases, the police will just give the person a Notice to Appear, but if you resist, they will take you to jail. If you think your right are being violated in some way, make sure to get the names and badge numbers of all police officers involved.
  • Get help! Hire a criminal lawyer in Jacksonville, FL: it is never a good idea to represent yourself in a criminal case. You may think you are getting a good deal, but you may not realize all the consequences.
  • Be part of the defense team: Talk to your criminal lawyer about the strong and weak points in your case. Discuss the evidence against you.
  • While in court: when you come to court, dress nice. This means no shorts or sneakers. For the ladies no short skirts. Wear something that you would wear to church or a job interview. Always be polite and respectful.

Facing criminal charges for theft in Florida can be scary and overwhelming. Please remember you don’t have to go through this process alone. Call our Jacksonville criminal defense attorneys at (904) 615-8950 for your free consultation.

Our Clients Share Their Experience

  • “Amazing experience with Esq. Mesic and her staff”

    Jose
  • “I am so pleased that Kate was my attorney who got me the best possible outcome I was hoping for!”

    Former Client
  • “Their legal knowledge helped to develop the best strategy to win.”

    Mike
  • “With proficiency and skill she pursued our interests with great results We highly recommend Ms. Mesic.”

    Former Client
  • “If anyone can accomplish the best case scenario for someone seeking legal services, it is her. I highly recommend Ms. Kate Mesic.”

    Jennifer
  • “Thank you Kate for all your hard work on this project and the many other contracts I have brought to you or needed you to create!”

    Kathee
  • “Kate is one of a kind! Her ethics, drive, expertise and support was impressive and reassuring to both my son and myself.”

    Cynthia
  • “She responded promptly to inquiries and had an excellent knowledge of the issues. I highly recommend Kate.”

    Mike
  • “I am so grateful that Kate has been in our lives at this very, very difficult and dangerous time.”

    Juliette
  • “Kate and her team will get it done”

    Vicky Zelen Jacksonville, FL
  • “If your looking for legal representation, you cannot do any better.”

    Jason
  • “Kate was extremely prompt with her assistance. She was able to get the best possible resolve working with the prosecution.”

    Kathy
  • “She was there to comfort me during the deposition and everything went very well thanks for her help.”

    Erica
  • “She was very compassionate and she came up with a game plan right away!”

    Teresa
  • “I would recommend her without reservation.”

    Ken

A Jacksonville Firm You Can Trust

Our attorneys will be your guides through this uncomfortable and stressful time. Fill out our secure online form or call (904) 615-8950 to get started.
    • Please enter your first name.
    • Please enter your last name.
    • Please enter your email address.
      This isn't a valid email address.
    • This isn't a valid phone number.
    • Please make a selection.
    • Please enter a message.