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Shoplifting may seem like a minor offense, but it is still a theft charge that may have life-changing consequences. A theft conviction can come with jail time and steep fines, and it can affect your ability to find employment.

Don’t let a shoplifting-related theft charge derail your future. The Denver criminal defense attorneys at Wolf Law have extensive experience helping those charged with theft find just resolutions to their cases and move forward with their lives.

If you’re facing theft charges in the greater Denver area, call Wolf Law today at 720-479-8574 for a free consultation or contact us online to tell us your story now.

Colorado Shoplifting and Theft Laws

Colorado defines theft, which includes shoplifting, in Article 4 of the Colorado Revised Statutes.

Theft occurs when:

“A person … knowingly obtains, retains, or exercises control over anything of value of another without authorization or by threat or deception; or receives, loans, money by pawn or pledge on, or disposes of anything of value or belonging to another that he or she knows to believe to have been stolen…”

Theft is a broad legal term used to describe several acts, including shoplifting. Colorado’s statutory intent law makes it clear that shoplifting is a type of theft:

“If any law of this state refers to or mentions larceny, stealing, embezzlement (except embezzlement of public moneys), false pretenses, confidence games, or shoplifting, that law shall be interpreted as if the word ‘theft’ were substituted…”

However, the law is written in a way that gives room for situations that could lead to trouble for some shoppers. For example, switching price tags or damaging merchandise are considered forms of shoplifting.

While some perceive shoplifting to be a minor crime, shoplifting penalties can be far-reaching. In addition to criminal changes, business owners or theft victims can pursue civil litigation to compensate losses and punish offenders.

Unrecognizable Caucasian female shoplifting in a clothing store.
Shoplifting is a form of theft, and penalties can include steep fines and jail time.

Shoplifting and Theft Penalties in Colorado

The penalties for shoplifting depend on the value of the stolen item(s). Based on the Colorado Revised Statutes, theft is categorized and penalized as follows:

  • A Class 1 Petty Offense if the stolen item is less than $50. Penalties may include up to one year in jail and/or a fine.
  • A Class 3 Misdemeanor if the stolen item is $50 or more but less than $300. Penalties may include up to six months in jail and/or a fine.
  • A Class 2 Misdemeanor if the stolen item is more than $300 but less than $750. Penalties may include up to 1 year in jail and a fine up to $1,000.
  • A Class 1 Misdemeanor if the stolen item is more than $750 but less than $2,000. Penalties may include up to 18 months in jail and a fine up to $5,000.
  • A Class 6 Felony if the stolen item is more than $2,000 but less than $5,000. Penalties include one year to 18 months in jail and possible fines.
  • A Class 5 Felony if the stolen item is more than $5,000 but less than $20,000. Penalties include one to three years in jail and possible fines.
  • A Class 4 Felony if the stolen item is more than $20,000 but less than $100,000. Penalties include two to six years in jail and possible fines.
  • A Class 3 Felony if the stolen item is more than $100,000 but less than $1 million. Penalties include four to 12 years in jail and possible fines.
  • A Class 2 Felony if the stolen item is $1 million or more. Penalties include eight to 24 years in jail and up to a $1 million fine.

Aggravating factors such as resisting arrest, use of force to acquire stolen items, or several theft charges in a short period of time can enhance the penalties.

Teenager in handcuffs after shoplifting
In addition to facing criminal charges, shoplifters may also be subject to civil lawsuits from business owners or theft victims.

Contact a Denver Criminal Defense Lawyer Who Cares

Even if you’re a first-time offender, shoplifting and theft penalties can be severe. Protect yourself and your future by working with an experienced criminal defense attorney.

The compassionate attorneys at Wolf Law have handled numerous shoplifting and theft cases throughout the Denver metro area and Colorado. We know that people make mistakes, and we understand the unique challenges these charges create for individuals.

Depending on your circumstances, you may qualify for a criminal diversion program, which are available to youths and adults alike. These programs can aid those struggling with mental health problems, disorders like kleptomania, drug abuse, and more.

If you or a loved one is accused of shoplifting or is facing other theft-related charges, call Wolf Law today at 720-479-8574 for your free consultation or contact us online to get started now.

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I Would Give Wolf Law 50 stars Out of 10 if I Could

I wanted to take a moment and give a MASSIVE THANK YOU to Wolf Law (and Colleen Kelley specifically)!

I had contacted Wolf Law recently regarding a previous offense and legal registration questions. This was for Sex Offender De-registration for the State of Colorado. After taking the time to review my case, my information, etc. etc, Wolf Law was able to take my case.

Considering the amount of time and effort involved to be removed, I am extremely grateful for Colleen Kelly/Wolf Law’s assistance in the matter.

After almost a decade, I was removed from the registry, and can now put a long chapter of my life behind me.

I would give Wolf Law 50 stars out of 10 if I could.

Again, THANK YOU Wolf Law for all your assistance and help in this matter!

I would very very very much recommend Wolf Law for your legal needs and/or situations. Please take a moment to contact them if you need to!

— Anonymous

Successful and Very Pleased

My name is Matt and I was ordered to register as a sex offender for 10 years. I ended up registering for 15 because the courts make it near impossible to get off the list. I tried on my own more than once and the paperwork for one county alone is enough to discourage someone, let alone four counties. I felt hopeless.

I decided to call Wolf Law and get an estimate. I ended up meeting with Colleen Kelley and she was very helpful. Told me the price, which was very reasonable, and I paid to get started. She warned me that it can take up to a year to get a court date and she was right. For me it took nine months, but when the time came, she represented me well and I finally got off the registry.

Life is so much more comfortable now and less embarrassing. The S.O. title is one of the worst badges of shame one can wear and thanks to Colleen Kelley and Wolf Law I no longer carry that weight. I’m thrilled to feel like a normal guy again.

— Matt S.

AMAZING LAWYER

Mr. Wolf was recommended to me through my cousin. I was facing a very serious legal matter and Mr. Wolf was amazing. He explained everything to me in detail. He listened to my questions and was very helpful. I am so thankful that he was my lawyer.

— Amy K

Ms. Kelly was a professional rock for us!

We found ourselves in an unimaginable situation with criminal charges pressed against my husband relating to a firearm. We were both petrified. Especially with the gun climate we find ourselves in. Neither of us had ever been in trouble with the law and after a terrible accident, we found just that. Ms. Kelly is extremely professional and knowledgeable of the legal system. She took the time to explain everything to us and prepare us for what would follow.

We are happy with the outcome of the case and would highly recommend Ms. Kelly to anyone who may find themselves in our situation.

— The Taylors

Best Possible Outcome Thanks to Wolf Law

When I walked into the office I was at a low point I can’t describe. When I talked to Jeffrey Wolf I wanted to hear, “Don’t worry, you’re going to be fine.” Instead I was told the honest truth: I was in serious trouble, but he would fight like crazy to get me the best possible outcome. After thinking about that I realized it was far better to hear the truth rather than a lawyer trying to get my business, and in the end I got exactly what Jeff said: Good advice, an excellent professional defense, and I believe the best possible outcome I could have wanted. I highly recommend Wolf Law.

— David R.

A Man of Passionate Action!

Colorado Law had recently passed a law, that would help me in the messy situation I was in. I knew immediately I had to find a lawyer to discuss the situation and the circumstances surrounding the process, and eligibility requirements for my specific case. I have to admit, I was very nervous reaching out to any lawyers who could help me.

So I did my research to the best of my ability, and having questions to ask to confirm I was making the right choice in a lawyer. A friend of mine who had previously worked with Mr. Wolf, had strongly recommended that I contact him. I am very grateful that I had! He was very respectful, and had a obvious passion to help me, asking specific questions surrounding my situation so that we can both deal with the issue at hand. Talking me through the processes and possible outcomes, straight forward. No sugar coating, which is nice because I value honesty.

Throughout the whole process, I was comfortable, and very trusting, as questions were answered accurately and after I tried contacting him with new questions or comments, he would return my call or email within 24 Hours! That showed me that he cared and was on top of his workload.

Nonetheless, the outcome of my case worked really well for me, and was a success. And for that, I want to show my gratitude.

Thank You Mr. Wolf for being on my side! I strongly recommend to anyone looking for a well competent lawyer, to contact Jeffrey Wolf at Wolf Law!

— Erwin H.

Amazing Results

I worked with Jeffrey on my first DUI case. I had a high BAC but instead of focusing on that, he had me focus on the things I could do before court to prepare. I did my part and he did too. 2/3 charges dropped, 1 largely reduced which prevented any jail time. I’m so thankful, highly recommend Wolf Law.

— Aaron S.

Outstanding Law Firm

Wolf Law was very helpful in fulfilling my personal needs. Colleen Kelley knew how to approach my case and made me feel better about my results in the bargain. I would recommend her to anyone with criminal trouble; she is an amazing lawyer.

— Levi

Expert Help

I am glad that I was referred to Jeff. His capable counsel turned a really big mess into a straightforward procedure. All my contacts with the entire staff at Wolf Law were outstanding. Jeff was able to explain very complicated proceedings in a way that made sense and allowed me confidence that I was fully prepared. Jeff’s professionalism both inside and outside the courtroom was an immense help during a tough time. Legal troubles are very stressful, and it is important to have someone working for you with the experience and knowledge to be able to help. Jeff provided that and more: never feeling lost in the situation was an added benefit that was priceless. I would highly recommend the team at Wolf Law.

— John B.

I Couldn’t Have Asked for a Better Lawyer

Until the night of my DUI, I had never been in trouble before so one could only imagine how scared I was. Facing a DUI with a possible felony/assault charge, I honestly wasn’t sure how I was going to get through it all. I happened to find Jeffrey Wolf through another lawyer. After meeting with him in person, I knew immediately that he was going to help me. I was a complete wreck from day 1 and yet he made me feel at ease with every meeting, phone call and court appearance.

One of the traits I appreciated most was his honesty. Mr. Wolf told me straight up from the beginning what could happen and what I was facing but reassured me that he would do everything he could to get me through it with the best outcome. Having him there with me through this process and through every court appearance with him by my side made it easier to handle and I am so grateful to have worked with him. At the end of it all, I was able to get probation with a deferred judgment on my case. I would absolutely refer Mr. Wolf to any of my friends and/or family!

— Nichole G.