When most people think of a robbery, they think of someone with a gun or knife holding up the cashier at a store. Although that would be considered a robbery, alot of people get themselves into serious trouble, whet they shoplift, even without a gun, knife or other weapon. This can happen when they simply shoplift but, during the course of the shoplifting or escaping from it, they either cause and injury, or use any force. This can be as simple as pushing a store employee aside to get away, and it doesn't matter how much you were trying to steal. A $1.00 candy bar can get you 10 years in jail.
Robbery during a shoplifting is defined in N.J.S.A. 2C:15 -1 where it results in “bodily injury” or involves “use of force” in the commission of the theft or during flight therefrom. At a minimum, Robbery is a Second Degree crime carrying 5-10 years of jail time, and the No Early Release Act also applies to a Robbery, requiring a defendant serve 85% of his jail term before he is eligible for parole.
So simply resisting a store employee with force, even without causing an injury, can turn a shoplifting, usually a Disorderly Persons offense for which you probably would not receive any, or minimum jail time (depends on various factors), into a Second Degree offense that an result in a state prison term of 5-10 years.
The moral of the story is that if you're going to shoplift, don't use any force, or cause any injury during the theft, or while trying to leave the store.
I have over 25 years experience handling shoplifting and other criminal matter. If you, a family member or friend have been charged with a crime, call my office for a free consultation. I'll explain the charges and how I can help.
All the Best!
RANDY C. REDDEN