Ocean City Prosecutor Declares War on Shoplifters
In Ocean City, New Jersey theft is a big problem on the Boardwalk according to the Ocean City Police Department. The Municipal Court, business owners and police department have adopted a zero tolerance policy to shoplifting and do not allow offenders to plead to a lesser charge.
Ocean City prides itself on being a safe place relatively free of violent crime with shoplifting being the city’s most common offense. There has been a decline in the number of violations, dropping from 131 in 2010 to 53 in 2013. The police department attributes this decline to the police meeting annually with the business owners to address shoplifting, which remains their #1 concern.
Criminal Lawyer John W. Tumelty, Former Prosecutor
Ocean City Criminal Lawyer, John W. Tumelty is a former prosecutor who has unique insight into the NJ criminal justice system. If you have been charged with shoplifting or any other theft offense, Mr. Tumelty can help you avoid the most serious of penalties. With over 38 years of experience, John is a local attorney familiar with the Municipal Court and Judges in Ocean City. He has an extensive track record and will be your best advocate. Contact us today, we are available 24/7 to discuss your case over the phone or schedule a free consultation using our online form.
What is Considered Shoplifting on the Boardwalk?
Shoplifting in New Jersey is committed when a person takes or conceals merchandise, alters or removes price tags, transfers merchandise to another container, causes merchandise to “under-ring,” or removes a shopping cart from a store, with the intention of depriving the merchant. A person caught concealing merchandise can be presumed to have intended to take it without paying for it. The charge and the potential penalty are dependent on the value of the goods that were supposedly taken during the shoplifting. The following chart shows what level of theft charge, the classification, and the potential penalties.
|2nd Degree||full retail value of $75,000 or more||imprisonment of 5-10 years||fine up to $150,000|
|3rd Degree||full retail value of $500 but less than $75,000||Imprisonment of 3-5 years||fine up to $15,000|
|4th Degree||full retail value of between $200 and $500||Imprisonment up to 18 months||fine up to $10,000|
|Disorderly Persons Offense||full retail value of under $200||imprisonment up to 6 months||fine up to $1,000|
Additional mandatory penalties include:
- for a first offense, at least 10 days of community service
- for a second offense, at least 15 days of community service
- for a third or subsequent offense, up to over 35 days of community service AND imprisonment for no less than 90 days