North Carolina Shoplifting Laws
As a form of theft, shoplifting is criminalized under North Carolina’s larceny laws which categorize the crime by the value of the goods stolen without purchase. Various laws prohibit shoplifting in North Carolina, including the following:
Larceny of Property
If you left a store or attempted to leave a store without intending to pay for goods or merchandise, you may be charged with larceny. Depending on the value of the items shoplifted, you may face misdemeanor or felony charges. For example, if you have stolen items worth less than $1,000, you can be charged with a Class 1 misdemeanor. If you have stolen items worth more than $1,000, then you may face charges for a Class H felony.
If you are charged with stealing from an individual, an explosive substance, or a firearm, or you have prior convictions, you will be charged with a felony, regardless of the value of the goods.
Concealment of Merchandise
North Carolina’s shoplifting laws apply before you leave a store’s premises. For example, if you conceal goods or merchandise that you did not purchase while still on the premises, you may be charged with a Class 3 misdemeanor if it is your first offense. Even if you hide goods or merchandise in preparation for shoplifting, you may still be arrested and charged with larceny.
If you intentionally transfer price tags from one item to another to be able to buy merchandise at a lower price, then you may be charged with a misdemeanor offense. You may be charged a Class 2 misdemeanor for a second offense, and a third or subsequent offense within a five period may result in a Class 1 misdemeanor. Using a lead or aluminum-lined bag, clothing, or similar device to prevent an anti-shoplifting device from working may result in a Class H felony.
Organized Retail Theft
If you conspire with another individual to shoplift from retail establishments, with a value exceeding $1,500 over a 90-day period, with the intent to sell goods or merchandise for money, you may be charged with a Class H felony. If the value exceeds $20,000, you may face Class G felony charges.
Potential Defenses for Shoplifting Charges
We understand that theft and shoplifting charges can be emotionally challenging and complex. By working with a shoplifting defense lawyer, you may be in a better position to fight your larceny charges. A North Carolina lawyer will carefully assess the evidence against you to determine the strongest possible defense, which may include the following:
- No necessary intent to commit the crime
- The witnesses are unreliable, biased, or have an ulterior motive for accusing you
- You attempted to return the goods after inadvertently leaving the store
- Insufficient evidence to prove you committed the crime beyond a reasonable doubt
- Mistake of identity
- You acted under duress or coercion
- Solid alibi
With the highly experienced legal guidance of a shoplifting lawyer at King Law, you may avoid maximum penalties or clear your name altogether. We are well-versed in North Carolina larceny law and will fight the charges against you.
Speak With a Shoplifting Defense Lawyer at King Law
If you’ve been charged with shoplifting in North Carolina, it is in your best interest to retain a highly experienced lawyer at King Law to avoid maximum penalties for misdemeanor or felony convictions. Depending on the circumstances of your case, we may push for charges to be dropped or dismissed. We are dedicated to providing clients with comprehensive legal services and will work diligently to fight for you.
Call us today at (888) 748- 5464 or (888) 748-KING, or submit our contact form to schedule a consultation with one of our qualified North Carolina shoplifting defense lawyers. We are here to help you build the best possible defense strategy that meets your needs and strives for the best outcome.