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Why is shoplifting so common and why do so many people do it?

Shoplifting is something that almost everyone has done at one time or another. It is most common among young kids and teenagers. Unfortunately, some people don’t mature out of this urge. Stealing products from a store is extremely common and there have been many efforts to discourage this trend from growing. Stores have some products under lock and key, video cameras in makeup aisles, mirrors throughout the store, etc.

So, why do people continue to take the risk involved in shoplifting? It’s an easy habit to develop, especially when you’ve avoided getting caught in the past. Successful stealing increases your confidence and willingness to try bigger or more expensive products.

Here are the top reasons why people shoplift:

Broke – People who are broke or too young to earn money, often resort to stealing as a means of getting what they cannot afford on their own. It is a risky way to get what you want. And when done successfully, it often creates a cheaters mentality. You begin to see the honesty of others as “weak”, while you look for every opportunity to cheat your way towards having the things you want.

Drug addiction – Addiction is a powerful motivator. It can inspire a person to do things they never thought they would, by-passing all sense of moral accountability at the same time. When the desire of getting what you want is powerful enough, it will drive someone to achieve it with full determination, without regard to the law.

To re-sell and make a profit – Stealing and selling stolen goods gives you 100 percent profit and only the risk of getting caught, facing misdemeanor charges and paying fines. If a person can avoid the consequences of stealing and sell their items, they continue to make money from stolen products.

Impulsivity and the high of a “free prize” – Some people steal just for the high of it. It may be an excitement they don’t get anywhere else. Shoplifting might be a game of some sort. Who can “out smart” the cameras, security guards, and all the other obstacles stores put in place to discourage stealing.

Shoplifting may be common among teenagers, but it is a growing problem in all age groups. Addiction is not limited to a certain age, neither is the impulsivity to steal when you’ve developed a habit of doing so successfully. Quality criminal defense is necessary when criminal charges are presented to a person. You don’t want trouble with law enforcement to scar your record for a lifetime.

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Thomas G. Fallis, P.A.
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Jacksonville, FL 32204

Phone: 904-717-6684
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