Carrollton, GA asked in Criminal Law for Georgia

Q: I have been charged with Theft by shoplifting in bremen, ga. However when arrested i had not left the store yet

Related Topics:
2 Lawyer Answers
Zachary Taylor Beck
Zachary Taylor Beck
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Rome, GA
  • Licensed in Georgia

A: Leaving the store is not required to be prosecuted for theft by shoplifting. The key is whether you had intent to steal, which can be proven by the surrounding facts of how the alleged theft took place. For example, placing a store item in your personal bag or concealing an item underneath your clothes, while still in the store, will likely be adequate to prove intent to steal. In most cases, your subjective intent is irrelevant. However, the facts and circumstances around how the alleged theft took place will be key for your case. The above are only a couple examples.

Morris Margulis agrees with this answer

Morris  Margulis
Morris Margulis
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Duluth, GA
  • Licensed in Georgia

A: OCGA 16-8-14:

A person commits the offense of theft by shoplifting when such person alone or in concert with another person, with the intent of appropriating merchandise to his or her own use without paying for the same or to deprive the owner of possession thereof or of the value thereof, in whole or in part, does any of the following:

(1) Conceals or takes possession of the goods or merchandise of any store or retail establishment;

(2) Alters the price tag or other price marking on goods or merchandise of any store or retail establishment;

(3) Transfers the goods or merchandise of any store or retail establishment from one container to another;

(4) Interchanges the label or price tag from one item of merchandise with a label or price tag for another item of merchandise;


(5) Wrongfully causes the amount paid to be less than the merchant’s stated price for the merchandise.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.