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William A ProettaReviewsout of 30 reviews Keith G OliverReviewsout of 55 reviews

Charged with Shoplifting at Bridgewater Commons Mall?

Bridgewater Commons NJ Shoplifting Attorneys

Being placed in handcuffs and hauled away in the back of a police car can be traumatic for anyone but that is just the beginning.  The next stressful event is dealing with charges and having to appear in court to answer the charges. New Jersey as a whole but more importantly Bridgewater takes shoplifting offenses very seriously. This is just one of their ways of trying to deter would be shoplifters. Year after year the Bridgewater Commons itself and stores like Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s, Sephora, Victoria’s Secret and Apple spend a tremendous amount of money in their loss prevention units in an effort to combat would be shoplifters. So it should be no surprise to hear that when they finally do apprehend a shoplifter they tend to seek to make sure they are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. If you have been accused of shoplifting at the Bridgewater Commons Mall, we strongly recommend that you speak to a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible about your options.

At Proetta & Oliver we fully understand the stress and anxiety that most feel when they have been charged with a criminal offense like shoplifting. A lot of the stress is related to the fact that for most, this will be their very first time ever dealing with the criminal justice system. As such, we take a tremendous amount of pride in being very hands on with our clients and walking them through their case step by step to try and make this process as painless as possible. If have been accused of shoplifting and our summonsed to appear in the Bridegwater Municipal Court, let Proetta & Oliver help. If you would like to speak to one of our attorneys one on one about your options, then please contact our Bridgewater Office at 908-533-1064 or contact us online. One of our attorneys is available immediately for a free initial consultation.

Bridgewater Mall Shoplifting Charges

Shoplifting can be a rather complicated offense. First and foremost, it tends to encompass a lot more potential “conduct” then most people realize when they think about a shoplifting offense. On top of that, it is also considered a hybrid offense, meaning that it can either be considered an indictable offense (felony) or a disorderly persons offense (misdemeanor). To further complicate things, their are two totally different courts which may have jurisdiction over the charges: the Bridgewater Municipal Court and the Somerset County Superior Court.

What type of “Conduct” will be Considered Shoplifting in NJ?

Pursuant to NJSA 2C:20-11(b), a Defendant could be charged with shoplifting if anyone of the following events are being alleged:

  • That they purposely took possession of, carried away, transferred or caused to be carried away or transferred, any merchandise…
  • That they purposely concealed upon their persons any merchandise with the intention of depriving the merchant of the merchandise…
  • That they purposely altered, transferred or removed any label, price tag…
  • That they purposely transferred any merchandise from a container with intent to deprive the store of all the value of the merchandise…
  • That they purposely under-rang with the intent of depriving the store of the value of the merchandise…

Is Shoplifting a Felony or a Misdemeanor in NJ?

As touched upon above, shoplifting can either be a considered a felony or a misdemeanor offense. The value of the merchandise in question will be the sole factor that determines whether or not the Defendant is charged with a felony offense. Here is a breakdown of the different degrees and what the merchandise must be valued at.

2nd Degree Felony

  • The value of the merchandise is greater than $75,000.
    • The Penalties are as follows:
      • 10 years in prison;
      • $150,000 fine;
      • Felony criminal record
      • Community Service
      • Restitution

4th Degree Felony

  • The merchandise is between $200 and $500.
    • The Penalties are as follows:
      • 18 months in prison;
      • $10,000 fine;
      • Felony criminal record
      • Community Service
      • Restitution

3rd Degree Felony

  • The merchandise is between $500 and $75,000.
    • The Penalties are as follows:
      • 5 years in prison;
      • $15,000 fine;
      • Felony criminal record
      • Community Service
      • Restitution

Disorderly Persons Offense Offense

  • The value of the merchandise is less than $200.
    • The Penalties are as follows:
      • 6 months in Jail;
      • $1,000 fine;
      • Criminal record
      • Community Service
      • Restitution

Where do I go to court for a Bridgewater Shoplifting Case?

All felony level shoplifting charges will be litigated in the Somerset County Superior Court, which is located in Somerville. All disorderly persons offense shoplifting charges will be litigated in the Bridgwater Municipal Court, which is located at 100 Commons Way in Bridgewater. With that being said, the Somerset County prosecutors office does have the ability to remand felony shoplifting offenses back to the Bridgewater Municipal Court. If that is to occur, the felony shoplifting charges will be downgraded to disorderly persons offense. For more information on how the charges can be downgraded, please contact our Bridgewater office at 908-533-1064.

Shoplifting Attorney in Bridgewater New Jersey 

At Proetta & Oliver we defend those accused of shoplifting at the Bridgewater Commons Mall and elsewhere in throughout Somerset and Hunterdon County. If you would like to sit down with one of our attorneys and discuss your options then please contact our Bridgewater office at 908-533-1064 or leave us an email. One of our attorneys would be glad to go over the specifics of your case and formulate a game plan that works best to suit your needs and as always our initial consultations are always free of costs. So if you have any questions whatsoever, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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