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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70192
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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My wife was stopped lifting today and the police called, she had to return t

Customer Question

Hi.. My wife was stopped for shop lifting today and the police called, she had to return to police station in the morning to make a statement she says she missed items in her pram and offers to pay for them but was told no??
Ross
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
What would you like to know about this please?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Basically options, my wife can't have a caution as she starts training to be a midwife,so dos and don't of what to say tomorrow
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
If she can't accept a caution then that is a problem.
She can always make a no comment interview if she cannot deny the offence but then she may well be charged and sent to court.
Some constabularies do offer the fixed penalty fine for shoplifting of a sum under £100 but that is a risk as she would have to admit the offence.
Obviously a conviction is worse than a caution though so it is a high risk strategy.
I'm afraid it isn't likely that she would escape with nothing. If a conviction is the only other option then probably she should take the caution unless, of course, there is a massive hole in the evidence.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok, but surely it's deemed unreasonable not to except payment?? She did have a young child with her??and does she have a strong enough case to go to court with??
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
No. They are perfectly free to do that and, in fact, there is no basis to accept payment.
Offering payment after the offence does not mean there isn't an offence.
No, she doesn't have a case at all. Making an offer to pay when stopped is not a defence to the charge of theft. If that is what she is hoping then she should accept the caution as she will be convicted at court.
Having a young child is a non issue save for the fact that actually it aggravates her offending rather than mitigates it.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So even though it was a genuine mistake, our best hope is to take a caution?? Not court action??
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So who's decision is it on the course of action to be taken now, police or department store??
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
A genuine mistake would amount to a defence.
Then she should be answering questions in interview
Obviously though she takes the risk of being disbelieved and convicted at court. Depends how reasonable the mistake was.
It is the decision of cps bit realistically they are likely to charge
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok so can we refuse a caution and go to court,if we feel hard done by
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Nobody can make her accept a caution.
It is obviously better than being convicted at court though so it might be that she should would be better off.
I'm happy to continue with this but please rate my answer.
Jo C. and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So worst case scenario what would be the outcome if I persued court action and lost... Bearing in mind total cost of items was under £50
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So worst case scenario if I decide to play hard ball in the morning???
Thanks ross
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
They would charge her and send her to court where she could be convicted.
The sentence wouldn't be severe but she would have a conviction