request
X

FREE CONSULTATION

Thank you for your interest in The Law Offices of Andrew M. Weisberg. Please fill out the form below and we will be in touch soon

*Indicates Required Fields

bbb-rating

Call Today for a FREE CONSULTATION

SE HABLA ESPAÑOL

(773) 908-9811

AVAILABLE 24 HOURS/7 DAYS

menu

X

request

(773) 908-9811

AVAILABLE 24 HOURS/7 DAYS

FOLLOW US:

Aggressive. Experienced.

Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney
Former Cook Country Felony Prosecutor

blog_homeBlog Home

Know the Consequences If Your Chicago Teen Is Charged with Stealing

Stealing or shoplifting is one of the most common teenage crimes.

 

According to statistics put out by the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention, 25 percent of shoplifters are kids, and 55 percent of adult shoplifters say they got started in their teens.

 

Knowing this, it’s good to be prepared – as a parent – in the event that your Chicago teen is charged with stealing. Let’s review the theft laws here in Illinois and what the consequences might be for a juvenile who is caught.

 

Illinois Theft Laws

 

Stealing is another word for theft. Theft offenses generally involve someone taking something that is not theirs and

 

  • Intending to deprive the owner permanently of the use or benefit of the property;
  • Knowingly using, concealing, or abandoning the property in such manner as to deprive the owner permanently of such use or benefit; or
  • Using, concealing, or abandoning the property knowing such use, concealment, or abandonment probably will deprive the owner permanently of such use or benefit.

Along with things such as hiding a stolen item under a jacket or in a purse, theft also includes altering price labels, removing a shopping cart without consent, using or possessing a theft detection device, and more.

 

Depending on the value of the stolen property and where the item was stolen from – school, place of worship, or government property – theft could be a misdemeanor or felony offense.

 

If the stolen property is worth less than $500, the suspect could be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. Class A misdemeanors are punished by up to one year in jail, up to two years of probation, and a fine up to $2,500.

 

If the stolen property is worth more than $500 or the property is from a person, the crime is elevated to a felony offense.

 

How Is a Juvenile Affected By Illinois’ Theft Laws?

 

Many people believe that a juvenile charged with a crime should be treated the same way as an adult. However, kids have a better chance to turn their life around if they have the opportunity to be rehabilitated instead of simply going to a detention center to serve their time.

 

Thankfully, if your teen is charged with stealing, he or she will have a good chance at avoiding the penalties typically given to an adult. This year, our state even reformed juvenile crime laws not only to benefit juveniles who have been charged with a crime, but also to reduce the overall Illinois prison population.

 

Here are a few of the key changes:

 

  • During the interrogation process, all children under the age of 15 must have a lawyer present.
  • Juveniles who are charged or arrested for a crime before they turn 18 can have their criminal record expunged.

Chicago Juvenile Theft Lawyer

  • Probationary periods have been reduced for juveniles so they can serve their time and get back to being a productive citizen faster.
  • If a child is between 18 and 26 and charged with a nonviolent crime, he or she might be able to do community service through the Restorative Justice Community Court.

 

While these changes are beneficial to juveniles, the circumstances of the alleged crime will be especially important in determining the consequences your teenager might face. If your child was charged with stealing, contact an experienced Illinois juvenile crimes lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your teen’s situation and determine the best way to proceed so your child can beat the charges and get on with their life.

 

 

About the Author:

 

Andrew M. Weisberg is a former felony prosecutor who now serves as a defense attorney in the greater Chicago area. He has extensive experience in handling all types of criminal cases, from sex offenses and domestic violence to retail theft-related crimes, murder, and drug crimes.

 

Our Blog

Men Aren’t Always the Aggressors in Illinois Domestic Violence Cases

Domestic Assault | Domestic Battery | Domestic Violence

Domestic violence cases are increasing nationwide and are being highlighted in the media as a major problem in society today. In turn, domestic violence has received broader attention from lawmakers — and rightfully so.

There is a hidden epidemic, though: men can also be domestic violence victims.

In fact, the subject of domestic violence against men is recognized so little that many male victims of domestic violence don’t even recognize they are being abused.

Because of these societal norms, in [...]

Ways to Defend against an Illinois Shoplifting Charge

Shoplifting / Retail Theft

Shoplifting is common; so much so that many people see it as being no big deal. However, shoplifting is in fact a criminal offense taken very seriously by retailers and the state of Illinois.

Were you aware that shoplifting as little as $300 in merchandise is an automatic felony punishable by 2-5 years in prison? That’s an easy sum to reach these days — a couple of shirts and a nice bag, really.

Additionally, regardless of the value of items [...]

Law Offices of Andrew Weisberg