Police officers are paying close attention to theft and shoplifters throughout Minnesota. With the holidays approaching this weekend, police officers are patrolling stores in unmarked cards and looking for suspicious activity. Police are looking for groups of people entering a store and then dividing up and cars parked in the back of the parking lot. For the holidays, 36 agencies throughout Minnesota are looking for professional shoplifters. Police officers have made many arrests throughout Minnesota including at JCPenny and Target. The enhanced operations are known as Operation Blitz.
Theft is a serious offense and if convicted, the charges will go on your criminal record. Petty theft occurs when the property stolen is $500 or less. The sentence for petty theft is up to 90 days in jail and/or $1,000. If the property is valued between $500 to $1,000, it is a gross misdemeanor. The penalty for a gross misdemeanor is up to one year in jail and/or $3,000. If the property is between $1,000 to $5,000, the penalty may be up to five years of prison and/or a fine up to $10.000. Theft may include: theft of a Schedule III, IV, or V controlled substance, theft when the value of the property or services stolen is more than $500 but not more than $1,000, and the person has a conviction of a similar offense within the preceding five years, either in Minnesota or elsewhere, or the property stolen is not worth more than $1,000, and is taken from a corpse, grave, or coffin; or is a public or court record; is taken during a riot or disaster, etc. See Minnesota Statue 609.52 Subd. 3(3). for a full list of offenses. If the theft is more than $5,000, the penalty is up to 10 years in prison and/or up to $20,00.
A theft conviction will likely hurt your chances to get a job and find housing because it is a crime of dishonesty. If you have been charged with a theft, contact Keller Law Offices for a free consultation. We will be able to negotiate with the prosecutor for a better offer or take your case to trial. Max Keller is an aggressive Minnesota defense attorney. Call 952-913-1421 if you have been charged with any level of theft in Minnesota. It is also important to hire an attorney as soon as you are charged with theft and shoplifting to secure camera and video footage at the store which may be helpful in your case. Many stores do not keep footage for long periods of time. Any statements made to police at the time of your arrest or during questioning may be used against you in court. Contact Keller Law Offices as soon as you have been arrested for theft or shoplifting.