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Penalties for a Shoplifting Charge

Interviewer: What are the common misconceptions that people come to you with in regards to shoplifting? What’s a common misconception that they’ll have?

Adam: That usually believe they’re probably going to go to jail and that it’s all over for them. Nobody will hire them because they have a theft charge. It does have the potential to limit opportunities in the future, but just being charged with it doesn’t mean you’re necessarily going to be convicted on it.

A Conviction for Theft Can Limit Future Employment Possibilities

It doesn’t mean that you can’t get the charge amended to a lesser offense, if you’re entering a plea agreement. That is important to consider because in certain professions, a theft charge automatically would prohibit you from being employed in those fields

Interviewer: A charge or a conviction?

Adam: A conviction. Nobody can be discriminated against based on what somebody was charged with, but the actual conviction could substantially affect the person who has it on his or her criminal record.

Interviewer: Sounds like it’s really important for people that are accused of theft, even if it’s minor shoplifting stuff, to fight it because you’re saying a conviction could affect their ability, for the rest of their life, to get certain jobs.

Adam: You could be eliminated from entire fields. I don’t think you’ll find anybody that’s going to hire a nurse with a criminal conviction. That’s become an industry standard, regardless to whether it’s a nurse and they help assisted living, or in a hospital. I don’t think you’ll find an employer out there that would hire someone with a conviction because they’re dealing with patients and patients have items.

Interviewer: I guess that would stop you from working in a bank, certainly everything in the financial industry. Additionally, the person with a conviction would not be eligible for any position that would need security clearance or you as you said working with the elderly, or children.

I guess it comes down to the fact that on an employment application there’s usually the question, “Have you ever been convicted of a crime? If so, what?” If it’s in regards to theft that speaks volumes about your character even if it’s a small item, or many years ago?

Adam: Yes, that is very true.

By Adam Hunt

Ohio Criminal Defense Attorney Adam Hunt
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