North Carolina Shoplifting and Unlawful Concealment: What You Need to Know

Shoplifting and Unlawful Concealment If you have been accused of shoplifting or unlawful concealment in North Carolina, it's important to understand the charges against you and what penalties you may be facing.

Theft and dishonesty crimes are considered serious offenses in our state and can carry long-term consequences if you are convicted.

It's a good idea to have legal representation on your side if you are accused of any type of theft crime.

Contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer in Durham today to learn more about your rights and how they can help protect you during this difficult time.

What is Shoplifting?

Shoplifting is a type of theft that occurs when someone takes merchandise from a store without paying for it.

In some states, shoplifting is also known as petty larceny or theft.

What is Unlawful Concealment - Concealment of Goods?

Unlawful concealment is when the Defendant (the alleged offender) hides merchandise on their person or in their bag in order to leave the store without paying for it.

This can also be called Concealment of Merchandise.

The offense requires willful concealment.

Unlawful Concealment does not require you actually leave the store to be found guilty.

What is the Difference Between Unlawful Concealment and Shoplifting?

In North Carolina, the crime of shoplifting involves taking goods from a store without paying for them.

The crime of unlawful concealment, on the other hand, is defined as hiding merchandise while you're still in a store with the intention of stealing it.

Shoplifting generally requires that the defendant actually leave the store with the stolen merchandise before they can be charged, while unlawful concealment can occur even if the defendant never leaves the store.

What is Larceny?

Larceny is a type of theft that involves taking someone else's property without their permission.

Misdemeanor larceny is ordinarily a Class 1 Misdemeanor and carries up to 120 days in jail (incarceration).

Larceny that involves the theft of goods that are worth more than $1,000 is considered a Class H felony in North Carolina.

What are Possible Punishments?

Shoplifting and Unlawful Concealment If you are caught shoplifting or unlawfully concealing merchandise in North Carolina, you could be facing a number of possible punishments.

These could include:

  • Jail
  • Probation
  • Community service
  • Court Costs
  • Fines
  • Permanent Record
  • Community Service and Probation Supervision Fees

In criminal charges involving theft, the court may also order restitution, which means that you would have to pay back the value of the merchandise that was stolen.

If convicted, you will also have a criminal record which can follow you and make it difficult to find employment or housing.

Being branded as a thief or someone who cannot be trusted or of bad character is something to be avoided.

The social stigma associated with being dishonest or someone who steals is substantial.

"No one wants friends and family to know you've been accused of stealing. It's more than just a little embarrassing. There are very real consequences."

- Cole Williams, Durham Criminal Defense Attorney

If you are facing any of these penalties, it is important to seek legal assistance as soon as possible.

An experienced attorney can help you understand your rights and explain the best-case and worst-case scenarios.

We believe it's smart to establish an attorney-client relationship as soon as possible.

If This is My First Case, Won't They Drop the Charges?

A clean record does not guarantee the State will automatically drop the charges. A dismissal is by no means automatic, even if you have no prior criminal history.

Furthermore, a deferral, deferred prosecution, or Conditional Discharge is not always an option or guaranteed.

"While a clean prior record is good and may prove helpful in negotiations, you are not automatically entitled to a dismissal or deferred."

- Cole Williams, Criminal Defense Lawyer Durham NC

In fact, the prosecutor may see a first offense as an opportunity teach a lesson.

Theft crimes like shoplifting and larceny are serious legal matters that should not be taken lightly.

An experienced criminal defense attorney will carefully review the facts of your case and determine the best, most appropriate course of action.

An attorney may also be able to negotiate with the prosecutor on your behalf and seek a favorable resolution that avoids a conviction.

That could include getting the charges reduced or dismissed. Again, that's never guaranteed.

Each case, like each person facing criminal charges in Durham, is different.

A lot depends on the fact pattern (what happened) and the circumstances behind the charges

Do I Really Need a Lawyer?

Shoplifting and Unlawful Concealment The short answer is, yes.

We think you should always consult with an attorney if you have been accused or charged with any crime.

Whether it involves felony charges or misdemeanor larceny, a criminal conviction can have serious, long-term consequences.

It's important to have someone on your side who understands the law and knows how to navigate the court system.

An experienced lawyer will also be able to review the evidence against you and determine if there are any holes or weaknesses in the prosecution's case.

Defense attorneys protect confidential or sensitive information. That means what you tell us is protected by something called attorney-client privilege.

"Defense attorneys serve clients by providing information and advice. We offer a confidential consultation, understanding you may have questions about your shoplifting charge in Durham."

- Cole Williams, Criminal Defense Attorney

If you are facing shoplifting, concealment of goods, or larceny charges in North Carolina, call Colle Williams for a free consultation.

You may call Cole Williams: (919) 688-2647

Our Contact Form sends information to Mr. Williams via non encrypted email. Submitting a contact form does not create an attorney-client relationship.

Will I Have to Go to Court for Shoplifting Charges?

If you are facing shoplifting, larceny, or unlawful concealment charges in North Carolina, there's a good chance you will have to go to court.

No one should go through the criminal justice system alone. It can be really confusing and scary.

You need someone on your side who understands the law and knows how to navigate the court system.

"If you are facing shoplifting charges, larceny, or concealment of goods charges in North Carolina, call Colle Williams. We'd like to help you."

- Cole Williams, Criminal Defense Attorney Durham NC

What is Reasonable Doubt?

In order to be convicted of shoplifting, the State must prove you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

That's a pretty high standard.

It means the Finder of Fact must be fully satisfied or entirely convinced that you are guilty of the crime.

Cole Williams is a fabulous courtroom attorney. He's someone I respect and admire, having litigated complex legal matters in Durham with him. Our firm regularly refers clients to Cole and his staff, knowing they'll be treated in a kind, professional manner. Bill Powers, Charlotte Attorney
I've known Cole Williams both personally and professionally for more than 20 years. Cole has a keen legal mind and tenacious spirit. He is widely respected both in the Durham legal community and in North Carolina as a courtroom advocate. I highly recommend Cole Williams to you. John Fanney, Raleigh Criminal Defense Attorney