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Retail Theft

Florida Statute Section 812.015(1)(d) defines retail theft as:

  • taking possession of or carrying away of merchandise, property, money, or negotiable documents;
  • removing a shopping cart, with intent to deprive the merchant of the possession, use, benefit, or full retail value;
  • transferring merchandise from one container to another; or
  • removing or altering a price tag, universal product code or removing a label.

Effective October 1, 2019, the Florida legislature has increased the threshold amount for third-degree felony retail theft from $300 or more to $750 or more. The new legislation also increases the period from 48 hours to 30 days for which the value of the property taken during multiple thefts may be aggregated to determine the offense level.

Under Florida law, it is a crime to conspire to commit retail theft with the intent to sell the stolen property for monetary gain, when the offender who commits the theft subsequently places the stolen property in the control of another person in exchange for consideration. The new offense has a 30-day aggregation period under which any property taken or placed within such period can be aggregated to determine the offense level of the crime.

Florida law now makes retail theft a second-degree felony offense when during the 30 day aggregation period the value of the property taken over a series of retail thefts exceeds $3,000. Additionally, conspiring to commit retail theft to subsequently place the stolen property in the control of another person also qualifies as a second-degree felony if the value of the property taken, aggregated over 30 days, exceeds $3,000.

If a person commits retail theft in more than one judicial circuit, any theft committed over a 30-day period may be aggregated to determine the value of the stolen property, and the Statewide Prosecutor must prosecute the case.

Attorney for Retail Theft in Tampa, FL

If you were charged with committing retail theft or possession of anti-shoplifting countermeasures, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Sammis Law Firm. We represent clients charged with petit theft, shoplifting, and grand theft throughout Tampa and Hillsborough County, FL.

We also represent clients throughout the greater Tampa Bay area including Hernando County, Pasco County, Pinellas County, and Polk County, FL.

Call our criminal defense attorneys for theft crimes to schedule a free and confidential consultation to discuss the fact of your case and important defenses that might apply.

Call (813) 250-0500.


Third Degree Felony Retail Theft

Retain theft can be charged as a third-degree felony if the theft involves property valued at $300 or more and the person does one of the following:

  • Individually, or in concert with one or more other persons, coordinates the activities of one or more individuals in committing the offense, in which case the amount of each individual theft is aggregated to determine the value of the property stolen;
  • Commits theft from more than one location within a 48-hour period, in which case the amount of each individual theft is aggregated to determine the value of the property stolen;
  • Acts in concert with one or more other individuals within one or more establishments to distract the merchant, merchant’s employee, or law enforcement officer in order to carry out the offense, or acts in other ways to coordinate efforts to carry out the offense; or
  • Commits the offense through the purchase of merchandise in a package or box that contains merchandise other than, or in addition to, the merchandise purported to be contained in the package or box.

In 2001, the thresholds for third-degree felony retail theft were created and set by the Florida Legislature. The threshold for retail theft has not changed since that time.


Second Degree Felony Retail Theft

Under Section 812.015(9), F.S., retail theft is a second-degree felony if:

  • the person has previously been convicted of third-degree felony retail theft; or
  • individually, or in concert with one or more other persons, coordinates the activities of one or more persons in committing the offense of retail theft where the stolen property has a value in excess of $3,000.

Under Section 812.015(2), F.S., the retail theft statute also requires a fine of not less than $50 and no more than $1,000 for a second or subsequent conviction for petit theft from a merchant, farmer, or transit agency.


This article was last updated on Friday, June 1, 2018.

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