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Thread: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of punishme

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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    This seems to be a private version of the Probation Before Judgement (PBJ) plea deal frequently issued by the (corrupt?) court system now. The only difference being who gets to keep the booty. Whether the PBJ is issued by a judge and requires anger management, defensive driving or substance abuse classes, paid for by the "guilty" to prevent being called guilty, makes little difference. It is a shakedown either way since you "volunteer" or else.
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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    Seems like it could cost the taxpayers less in law enforcement, court, and even prison costs. (The latter less likely).

    But I thought that most retailers had a policy of not detaining shoplifters for reasons of safety and liability? This seems dangerous for basic security people, unless more highly trained and also....requiring higher pay.
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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    Quote Originally Posted by StillBallin75 View Post
    This isn't about ****ing kidnapping. The reason the individual is taken to a back room is so that 1) They can be confronted with evidence that they were shoplifting 2) be given a choice to either pay for the merchandise or return it to the store and 3) if some type of confrontation or dispute arises it doesn't become a spectacle for the whole store to see. It isn't like detaining someone in a jail cell.
    I would question the statement of putting your hands on someone....These days you may be the one finding yourself in cuffs for assault.
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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    Quote Originally Posted by JasperL View Post
    The article did a good job laying out the problem. Assuming I was actually innocent, it's still not a no-brainer to fight the charge. If the police did file charges, it would cost far more than the $320 to fight it assuming the risk of conviction was zero. You'd burn through that with the first phone call to a decent attorney. The possibility of $5,000 or $10,000 in attorney fees wouldn't bankrupt me so I could afford the risk and not suffer any change in lifestyle, but that's not true if you're poor.

    It all depends on whether the retailers are operating in good faith. If they are, and the article offered no evidence they were making spurious allegations, then there probably is little downside, and lots of petty criminals avoid a very damaging hit on their record for no more than a speeding ticket in lots of jurisdictions.

    FWIW, the traffic court in my area poses the same risks - if you're ticketed, it really doesn't pay to fight the ticket for 99% or so. My last one was total BS, but the fine was $100, I plead no contest, the judge put me on 3 month traffic "probation" and it stayed off my driving record. If I'd plead 'not guilty' it's my word against the police, and if found guilty I'd owe another $500 in 'court costs' for the 'trial' AND have a hit on my driving record. I was IMO completely innocent, but I paid the fine - no brainer. I'm not sure why I wouldn't take the $320 cost in this case for the same reasons, even if innocent.
    Personally from my experience this has never been a problem - these things don't even usually get that far. There is a really good way for any individual to prove their guilt or innocence, and that is to empty pockets/bags/purses. If you have no unpaid-for merchandise on your person, then the store would be hard-pressed to file charges against you - it's simply not worth their time and effort to do so.
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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    i would unzip my trousers and tell them to suck it
    while pissing all over their electronics

    but then i would not have stolen anything or have any outstanding warrants and could get away with such brash behavior
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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    This is completely unacceptable. Coercion is a much worse crime than petty shoplifting. It really pisses me off that powerful entities get away with the kind of criminal behavior in public view. The 320 dollars they extort is likely to be a lot more than the shoplifter was taking in the first place. Seems like Harvard Business School is churning out more thieves than San Quentin these days.

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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    Quote Originally Posted by rathi View Post
    This is completely unacceptable. Coercion is a much worse crime than petty shoplifting. It really pisses me off that powerful entities get away with the kind of criminal behavior in public view. The 320 dollars they extort is likely to be a lot more than the shoplifter was taking in the first place. Seems like Harvard Business School is churning out more thieves than San Quentin these days.
    But a lot less than the financial damage that would result from a conviction or even mounting a decent defense. Many states have laws only requiring proof that you removed an item from its immediarte place of display and did not pay for it. Perhaps you pick up a bag of socks (on aisle #2) and then find another that you prefer (on aislke #4) and swap them. Even though you did not intend to keep the initial item you "concealed" it by simply (re?)moving it to aisle #4.

    Shoplifting - FindLaw
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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    It all depends on if a person had a $1200 diamond crusted designer bra stuck down their pants at the time they were given the option or not, wouldnt you say?

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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    Quote Originally Posted by rathi View Post
    This is completely unacceptable. Coercion is a much worse crime than petty shoplifting. It really pisses me off that powerful entities get away with the kind of criminal behavior in public view. The 320 dollars they extort is likely to be a lot more than the shoplifter was taking in the first place. Seems like Harvard Business School is churning out more thieves than San Quentin these days.
    Ooooooh!!! The poutrage!!!

    People are given a choice. Take a course or call the cops. They are shown a video which explains their rights and gives them the absolute right to call the cops and to have a lawyer. Then they are given a choice. 20,000 to date have considered the options, their own actions, and chosen to take them up on an option that avoids a record and that the preliminary study indicates has resulted in a 1% recidivism rate as per the story.

    Take door number two...by all means. Have the store call the cops (which they would normally do). Get arrested, booked, tried, sentenced. Odds are pretty strong that if they approach you they already have enough evidence to convict. So accept your penalty and your nice shiny new criminal record.

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    Re: Pay us or we’ll call the cops: Many U.S. stores giving shoplifters choice of puni

    Quote Originally Posted by justabubba View Post
    i would unzip my trousers and tell them to suck it
    while pissing all over their electronics

    but then i would not have stolen anything or have any outstanding warrants and could get away with such brash behavior
    Historically, they wouldnt be tapping on your shoulder unless they could already clearly demonstrate you were guilty.

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