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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71159
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Do I have any legal rights left after I confess to shoplifting

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Do I have any legal rights left after I confess to shoplifting in a store and pay for the goods that I walked out with. In my case, the store's CCTV did not detect me but I was guilty of my actions and I walked back to the store after a couple of days and paid for the goods. The security called the police on me who made me confess in front of the store's security camera in their room in a basement and let me go and assured me that there will not be any criminal case against me and I was not arrested. I paid and I returned home. But I am not sure if it's all over. I still think they can go back and see my CCTV footages as I could not return everything. I was absolutely scared of major trouble if I told hem that I still had goods with me that day to return which I had intended to return but because they betrayed my trust, I could not. I had called the store manager the day I went back and I was assured that no security will be involved but they didn't keep their word and both security and police arrived. The major reason was that I had called the security how their CCTV works a few days before I went to the store and they thought that I was part of a bigger burglar group going to attack the store and so they were on an alert. I could not reveal that I still had some goods on me because I was already ashamed and embarrassed. I am on a student visa in the UK. How do I protect myself if they come at my place with an arrest warrant? Their CCTV had failed to detect me and I had turned myself in but maybe this time, I might get caught as they know where I live.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Legal rights in relation to what?
Which rights were you thinking of?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
My main concern is can I still get arrested if they decide to do a CCTV scan? Do you think it's now all over as I still get very worried. How do I defend myself? Until how long the stores can keep these video files?
I was shocked to know when they were asking me which day and time I had come to the store. Why do you think they could not tell? Don't their CCTVs tell them all this? Also, they said they could not confirm the day the goods were taken out by me and if they were taken out by me after they ran the tag in the goods.
Do you think this over now?
To whom have you confessed?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I don't know who it was. The person, supposedly a neighborhood watch person, made me sit in the store's basement and made me confess in front of the store's security camera.
They could make a report to the police. If they do the police will have to investigate although that is only going to be an issue if you are known to the local police and so can be identified or you return to the store. They are not going to do door to door enquiries on a theft by shoplifting.
If they do then the fact that you have confessed will be evidence against you. it depends what else you have to support that.
Their CCTV systems probably will show you on other occasions but they do not sit watching CCTV footage. Private companies are concerned with making profit. They employ staff to run the store not to sit watching back footage of a CCTV camera.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Within how many days can they decide to arrest me if they make such a case after I have left the store and also have paid for the goods partially? After how many days should I put my mind to rest and not worry that I should be scared Everytime I see a cop? I don't have any history before this. Can I check if I am on DBS or blacklisted shoppers?
Also, the unreturned goods were taken out by me on the same day as the rest that I went to return. It did not happen on two different occasions. Can they still make a case out of it when they missed their chance of checking my bag that day? I was shocked to know that they had not detected that their goods were missing even after three days. When I went back to the store, I thought I would be immediately identified but actually, i identified myself and admitted to them and only then did they know that the goods were missing. They were not at all concerned about shoplifting, they were more interested in those calls I made prior coming to the store. They thought that I was part of some big burglary going to happen soon.
Its an either way offence so there are no time limits.
They can still make a report. The fact that they didn't notice this doesn't mean its not an offence.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
How can I know if I have been blacklisted for shoplifting by other stores or? Also isn't it that they cannot take an action after 31 days? How do stores know if their stocks are missing? Is it possible for the stores to trace the item that goes missing on that exact day and time and person? Or they only keep track of goods that are sold?
You don't get blacklisted from stores but you do sometimes have you invitation to enter revoked. If that has happened though they would have to notify you.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I have no idea of how CCTV works. Can you please tell me if the CCTVs are scanned daily and if an item goes missing after how many days does it get noticed? On their tally machine, do missing items also appear and what do stores do? do they go and scan or just ignore it because they do not have enough man power to see then CCTV image of that particular Fay and that particular time when the item goes missing? Are CCTVs that accurate?
That is an issue for the store internally rather than a legal issue.
CCTV is not usually inaccurate by definition.
Jo C. and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Is there a number where civilians can know how CCTVs work? Can I ask the store to release any footages of me visiting the store?
No. its the store's property. They don't have to release it.
Jo C. and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Can the store still press charges against me? The police let me go that day but they also made me confess in front of the store's security camera which the store has. Can I get a lawyer to defend me?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Relist: Incomplete answer.
Yes, they can as I said.

You will be offered a solicitor
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Does the vaLue of the goods influence the store's decision? The total goods was upto £120 out of which I paid £58 that day. How does the solicitor help? I was not caught. Technically, I turned myself in. So, what can be my defense?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.