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NCJ Number: 66899 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: TAKE IT ... OR LEAVE IT? AN INDEPENDENT STUDY OF THE CAUSE AND EFFECT OF THE INCREASE IN SHOPLIFTING
Author(s): R ADLEY; M DRUMMOND; P SAVAGE; P STRACHAN
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 31
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: A STUDY OF SHOPLIFTING CASES IN ENGLAND FINDS THAT TWO TYPES OF THEFT ARE INVOLVED--INTENTIONAL THEFT OF GOODS, WHICH OUGHT TO BE HANDLED AS A CRIMINAL MATTER, AND UNINTENTIONAL THEFT.
Abstract: PROFESSIONAL THIEVES AND AMATEURS WHO STEAL DELIBERATELY FROM STORES ACCOUNT FOR THE LARGEST DOLLAR LOSS. THE MAJOR PROBLEMS FACING POLICE, COURTS, AND STORE SECURITY PERSONNEL, HOWEVER, ARE CAUSED BY 'UNINTENTIONAL' SHOPLIFTERS. OFTEN THESE ARE MIDDLE-AGED PEOPLE WHO HAVE NEVER COMMITTED THEFT BEFORE, AND WHO WILL NEVER DO SO AGAIN. THEY FREQUENTLY ARE UNDERGOING CONSIDERABLE STRESS AT THE TIME OF THE SHOPLIFTING INCIDENT, AND THEY MAY SEEK MENTAL HEALTH TREATMENT AFTERWARDS. SOME OF THESE UNINTENTIONAL THIEVES ARE ELDERLY PERSONS WHO PUT AN ITEM IN THE SHOPPING BASKET AND FORGET TO PAY FOR IT. THE POLICE AND COURTS PRESSURE THESE PEOPLE TO PLEAD GUILTY FOR CONVENIENCE SAKE AND LAWYERS DEFENDING THEM FIND THE CASES EXTREMELY DISTASTEFUL. IN SOME INSTANCES, AN ELDERLY PENSIONER WHO STEALS FOOD GENERATES SO MUCH PUBLICITY THAT THE STORE PERSONNEL PREFER NOT BRINGING CHARGES. A CHANGE IN THE LAW IS RECOMMENDED. INTENTIONAL SHOPLIFTING SHOULD CONTINUE TO BE REGARDED AS THEFT AND SHOULD BE HANDLED IN THE CRIMINAL COURTS. HOWEVER, THERE SHOULD ALSO BE A COMPLAINT (OR MISDEMEANOR) CALLED 'TAKING GOODS FROM A SHOP WITHOUT AUTHORITY AND WITHOUT MAKING PAYMENT.' THIS COMPLAINT WOULD REQUIRE EITHER THE RETURN OF THE GOODS OR PAYMENT FOR GOODS PLUS COURT COSTS. THIS LESSER CHARGE WOULD MAKE THE HANDLING OF UNINTENTIONAL SHOPLIFTERS EASIER. TABLES ARE PROVIDED. CASE HISTORIES ARE APPENDED.
Index Term(s): Crimes against businesses; Criminal intent; Criminal responsibility; England; Insanity defense; Retail business crimes; Shoplifting; Theft offenses
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=66899

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