Can Police Come To House After Shoplifting?

This is a not so uncommon question that a shoplifter may ask at some point before or after they’ve shoplifted. There are obviously some consequences you are going to face if you shoplift, but in some states the consequences are not as dire as you might assume. It is unsettling when the police come to your door when you know you have not done anything illegal, what more when they come to your door after you have shoplifted. Well, let’s find out more about whether police can come to your house after you have shoplifted.

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How Serious of A Crime Is Shoplifting

Well if you manage to leave a shop with unpaid merchandise and you just so happen to get caught, you can spend a minimum of six months in jail or pay a hefty fine (hefty because you’ll be paying more than the value of the merchandise you took.) Any crime that leads you to spending at least six months to one year in jail can be considered a serious crime. Shoplifting is essentially stealing and hoping to get away with it especially if you manage to get all the way to your house without any intervention from the police or from the security guards of the place you stole from. And whether or not you manage to get to your place/ house. The police can still come and arrest you, if it just so happens that you were reported by the shop.

  • However some shops tend to not involve the police, they would much rather deal with the issue themselves. So to prove you indeed intend to shoplift, the security/ employees of the shop will let you leave the shop if you have been spotted (via cameras in the shop or an employee ) to have taken something and then hidden it. They will then apprehend you just after leaving the shop, to prove you wanted to leave without paying for the merchandise. But because they would have caught you and retrieved the stolen goods, they may simply let you off with a warning. This is especially true for first time offenders like kids or teenagers. But the situation may not be the same for adults (which will most likely have the police called on them for the shoplifting.)

Why Police Can Come To Your House After You Shoplift

It is a crime to shoplift and so anyone who perpetrated that crime should be penalized accordingly by means of the law. When you commit a crime and there is clear evidence of you committing the crime, it is now the duty of the police/ law enforcement to make you deal and understand the severity of the crime you would have done. You may have to pay a fine, you may have to go to prison, you may have to do some community service. As long as you pay for the crime as the law sees fit. If the shop you steal from (shoplift) has evidence against you for shoplifting, they can choose to take that evidence to the police to have you arrested. After which the police will track you down to where you live and arrest you. If there’s enough evidence against you for shoplifting, it is very easy for the police to get an arrest warrant; with which they can come to you house (legally) and arrest you.

What To Do When Police Come To Your House For Shoplifting

So the police have come to your house and are explaining to you that you have charges wrought against you for shoplifting. What do you then do? Nothing, do not run or try to deny the accusations because what you say can and will be used against your defense in court. Comply with the arrest (because chances are you that you will be arrested) and when you get to the police station ask to contact your lawyer if you have one. If you do not, the state will get one for you. If shoplifting is your first and only offense, the law is less likely to be harsh on you. However if you’re a repeat offender, you may be setting yourself up for a lot of prison time when you shoplift.

Why You Should Not Shoplift

  • Again, it is against the law to shoplift, no matter the size of the stuff you take. It is essentially stealing what doesn’t belong to you and that could spell trouble for you from the authorities.
  • If you’re young and still schooling or want to go to school but cannot afford it. A shoplifting crime on your record can hault potential bursaries and funding opportunities from being donated to you.
  • When you’re looking to purchase property in the future, a shoplifting crime on your public record will certainly make it hard for you to find a realtor who can sell you the property because they don’t trust you. Basically even a minor crime can change your life for the worst, so you’d rather not shoplift.
  • Shoplifting is considered to be a misdemeanor crime. That means once it’s on your public record that you have once shoplifted, it will be very hard for employers to trust or even employ you in the long run. A misdemeanor crime will stay on your public record until you’re 99 years old, the average person doesn’t even get to live that long. So probably even after you’ve passed on, you’ll have the crime on your record.


As soon as the judge’s gavel hits that you are guilty of shoplifting, your entire life can be ruined. It’s best not to take things that don’t belong to you in the first place. When police come to your house they’re only doing their job to protect the citizens of the state (and most probably even yourself) from your unacceptable behavior. If you happen to have been falsely accused of the shoplifting, you are likely to have the charges dropped if you have evidence to defend yourself like a receipt of purchase (which you should always keep around for at least thirty days after purchasing something before throwing it in the trash.)