What is a Theft in Washington ?

In the State of Washington, there is no difference between shoplifting and theft, unlike in some other states. Therefore, if you take something from a store in Washington, you’ll be charged with theft and the specific charges and penalties will depend on the property value of the merchandise involved.

Most of the shoplifting cases fall under theft in the third degree which is considered to be a misdemeanor offense. An individual can be charged with this crime if they commit theft of property which: 1) Does not exceed $750 in value; or 2) Includes 10 or more merchandise pallets or 10 or more beverage crates, or a combination of 10 or more merchandise pallets and beverage crates.

Although shoplifting isn’t considered a major offense compared to other crimes, you shouldn’t take the situation lightly if you’re facing shoplifting allegations. Because theft charges concern character issues, any conviction can affect employment or housing opportunities.Moreover, theft can be considered a crime of moral turpitude and therefore, could have significant immigration consequences. Two possible defenses that one can potentially raise are a mistake of fact and a lack of intent.

If you or a loved one is in a bind as a result of a criminal charge, immediately contact a Seattle Criminal Attorney. A Criminal lawyer is not going to judge you, and understands that everyone makes mistakes. Hiring a Seattle Criminal Lawyer to help can – at a minimum – reduce penalties, and can help direct people on how to best deal with their criminal charge, and many times even get them dismissed. So it should go without saying that someone cited for a misdemeanor or felony should hire a qualified Seattle Criminal Lawyer as soon as possible. Criminal charges can cause havoc on a person’s personal and professional life. Anyone charged with a crime in Washington State should immediately seek the assistance of a seasoned Seattle Criminal Lawyer.

Leave a reply