Shoplifting is one of the most common crimes that take place in Maryland today, and it’s a crime that most people consider to be “minor.” While shoplifting is, in most cases, a misdemeanor, it’s something that should be taken seriously. Juveniles are often the perpetrators of this crime. Learn more about juveniles and shoplifting, and how to defend against shoplifting charges if you or your child are arrested.
Juvenile Shoplifting Statistics
- 25% of all shoplifters are under the age of 18. According to statistics published by the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention, a quarter of shoplifters are juveniles. Although the majority of shoplifters are adults (75%), 55% of these adults say they began stealing as children.
- Shoplifting knows no gender. Both young men and young women have shoplifted, and no gender tends to shoplift more than the other.
- Teens usually don’t plan to shoplift. 72% of juvenile shoplifters reported no prior intention to shoplift when they did. In fact, it simply was a spur of the moment crime.
- Most kids know others who shoplift — and many of them spend time with those shoplifters. Approximately 89% of juveniles surveyed by the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention know one or more of their peers shoplifts. Even more unnerving is that 66% of juveniles surveyed spend time with peers who they know to be shoplifting.
- Shoplifters are rarely caught. Statistics show that a shoplifter is caught only once every 48 times a theft is committed. And, retail stores and establishments only turn shoplifters in about half the time.
- Juveniles have a difficult time breaking the habit of shoplifting. Shoplifting produces an adrenaline rush similar to a high. 33% of juveniles say it is difficult for them to stop shoplifting, even if they are caught and penalized.
What to Do If Your Child Is Caught Shoplifting
If your child has been caught shoplifting or is arrested and charged with the crime, it’s important that you take the matter seriously. While it’s critical that your child learns from their mistakes, it’s also necessary for you to protect your child’s rights and best interests as they move through the Maryland criminal system.
Contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer to ensure your child has zealous legal representation during this difficult time. Call Attorney Christopher J. Llinas today for a consultation at (443) 235-5793.