If your arrest for Shoplifting in Manhattan or issuance of a Shoplifting Desk Appearance Ticket in Brooklyn was not enough, a store security guard just tried to intimidate you into forking over hundreds of dollars to settle a future suit against you by the retailer. Obviously, you have consulted with a New York Shoplifting lawyer who has experience representing clients arrested for Petit Larceny (New York Penal Law 155.25) and Criminal Possession of Stolen Property in the Fifth Degree (New York Penal Law 165.40). During that discussion with your New York criminal defense attorney you addressed the criminal consequences of a conviction or plea and collateral consequences to certain dispositions, but you may have forgotten to have a conversation regarding the civil ramifications. New York General Obligations Law Section 11-105 is the statute in New York State that gives retailers the authority to pursue civil actions against those arrested for or accused of crimes such as Shoplifting. It is extremely important to note, for a retailer to pursue this remedy for your allegedly criminal conduct, the retailer does not have to wait for a conviction or resolution of the case. In fact, it is fairly typical for store security officers to shove an agreement to pay a fine in the face of a detained person. They then prey on this fear to force or coerce that person to pay a ridiculous fine…even if he or she is innocent. Unfortunately, the law allows retailers to collect up to five times the value of the stolen property or $500 (whichever is greater).
If you survived being bullied into paying this fine, whether or not you do so in the future is something you should discuss with your New York criminal defense attorney. Will a suit against you be filed? What is the likelihood? If one is filed and you do not respond, will a judgment be entered against you? How will this impact your credit? Will lawyers or a collection agency pursue you? Again, these are questions you should be asking your counsel who should not only be discussing criminal and collateral consequences of a Shoplifting arrest or Desk Appearance Ticket, but civil ones as well.
For in depth information on the laws of New York Desk Appearance Tickets, Shoplifting in New York and related criminal issues, follow the respective links. Additional information on criminal statutes in New York, legal decisions and cases in the press, is located on Saland Law PC’s New York Criminal Lawyer Blog. A search for “Shoplifting,” “Petit Larceny,” “155.25” and “165.40” will reveal a wealth of information for those arrested for Shoplifting in New York City and State.
Representing those arrested and issued Desk Appearance Tickets for Shoplifting throughout the New York City area, the founding New York criminal lawyers at Saland Law PC served as Assistant District Attorney’s in Manhattan prior to starting the firm.