Kohls employs very aggressive strategies to combat shoplifting. Due to these strategies there are many arrests and prosecutions which result from incidents allegedly involving retail fraud. There are a number of policies and procedures that Kohls undertakes to protect the store property and deter theft.
First, Kohls is very determined to prosecute persons who they catch shoplifting. The reason for this is to protect their merchandise and to deter people from stealing from Kohls. Kohls loss prevention employees are willing to testify at court, when necessary, in support of a shoplifting prosecution. Kohls ban the people they catch from shopping in their stores, and seek civil damages as well (usually in the amount of $200).
Second, the sales associates at Kohls are trained to interact with customers, and to report suspicious conduct to loss prevention. The stores are usually pretty well staffed.
Third, the store has many cameras to eliminate blind spots and identify theft. Those cameras are constantly being watched by a trained loss prevention officer.
Fourth, the video equipment is able to clearly record the activities of persons inside the store. That video is readily available to law enforcement once Kohls detains a person suspected of retail fraud. Kohls will photograph the merchandise involved and will compile their own investigation report, which are provided to the police.
Fifth, the loss prevention personnel are trained to identify and monitor suspicious behavior. They pay close attention to the number of items taken into dressing rooms, and check the dressing rooms to see if items, packaging materials, or theft detection devices are left behind. The loss prevention personnel actively watch persons who are suspected of prior thefts at Kohls whenever they enter a store. Typically, persons are not approached by loss prevention until after they have concealed the item and have passed all sales registers.
Sixth, loss prevention work to enhance their case by attempting to obtain confessions from persons caught shoplifting. Don’t expect mercy. Pleading with them to not call the police or seek prosecution will not work. Any confession will be used in court proceedings. Kohls is not required to advise you of your Miranda rights. Do not make any admissions of any crime.
Seventh, Kohls has relationships with local police and mall security (when applicable) to respond promptly whenever someone is detained by loss prevention. Police are glad to respond, because the investigation that Kohls loss prevention performs makes their job easier.
It is important to remember that even though Kohls takes these steps, it does not mean that they don’t make mistakes. When a false arrest occurs, it is important to have an experienced criminal lawyer who knows how to properly defend this type of allegation. Be careful, there are a lot of lawyers who claim to know how to defend a case but really do not. The quality of legal representation that you obtain could make all the difference.
Even in cases where the person apprehended for retail fraud is guilty, it is still important to retain an experienced lawyer. An experienced criminal lawyer will help you obtain the best possible result. An experienced lawyer may also be able to help you avoid a theft conviction.
Even though retail fraud is often an impulse related offense, a conviction can have life long consequences. It is harder to find a job if a background check reveals a theft conviction like shoplifting. The employer is worried that the job candidate with steal from work or a client. There are many licensed professions that may not allow a person with a theft related background to become licensed. Such a conviction also is a stain on a person’s reputation. Your best bet is to seek an experienced criminal lawyer, such as Attorney Daniel Hilf of Hilf & Hilf, PLC to assist you.