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Arlington Heights retail theft defense lawyer

In the grand scheme of things, retail theft is a relatively minor crime--but it is still a crime. In many cases, retail theft is a misdemeanor charge in Illinois, but it can elevate to a felony charge in certain situations. What many people do not know is that retail theft is not just simply taking something from a store without paying for it. You can be charged with retail theft for a variety of different actions, which also determine the type of charge and the applicable penalties if you are convicted. 

General Retail Theft

When most people think of retail theft, they probably think of the type of theft that is defined under the Illinois Criminal Code. According to Illinois law, general retail theft occurs when a person takes possession of, carries away, transfers, or aids in the transferring or carrying away of merchandise without paying for the products and with the intention of depriving the store of its use or benefit. Retail theft is a Class A misdemeanor, as long as the value of the allegedly stolen merchandise does not exceed $300. If the merchandise is valued at more than $300, then the charge is elevated to a Class 3 felony. A repeat offense of retail theft is also an elevated charge and is classified as a Class 4 felony.

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Arlington Heights, IL Theft Lawyer

In casual conversation, robbery, theft, and burglary may seem synonymous, but in the criminal justice system, they are not. Robbery, theft, and burglary are three different charges that have very different consequences. 

Most people know these crimes all involve taking property that belongs to someone else, but there are various behaviors that constitute each offense. If you face robbery, theft, or burglary charges, it is important to understand the differences.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_566889343.jpgIn the event you, a friend, or family member is detained for suspicion of theft, it is important to understand the variables that might impact how law enforcement and prosecution might consider proceeding. Having a basic understanding of theft laws in this state might be of an advantage.

Misdemeanors and Felonies

In general, grand theft is a more serious charge than petty theft—usually applicable when a person is alleged to have stolen money or property of a higher value.  In most states, grand theft is a felony and petty theft is a misdemeanor. In Illinois, a defendant can face an array of charges depending on the value of what is taken and the circumstances surrounding the incident. Classifications include:

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Arlington Heights theft crimes defense lawyer, criminal behavior, gambling, gambling addiction, theft crimes, selling stolen property, common criminal offenses, addictionThe notion of gambling and crime going hand in hand is age old, and although many convey gambling with images of mobsters from the 1920’s or illegal moonshine distilleries, this is not the reality of the matter in today’s world.

Today, gambling is an addiction on an epidemic scale. It is no different than any other addiction, and the need to satisfy a craving can make a person resort to drastic measures when desperate. In many cases, this desperation can result in serious criminal charges carrying jail sentences and steep fines.

Studies have shown that around half of all gamblers also commit crimes of varying degrees.

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