S625, An Act relative to penalties for shoplifting

Senator Brownsberger submitted the following written testimony to the Joint Committee on the Judiciary.

TO:         Committee on the Judiciary

 FROM:    Senator William N. Brownsberger

 RE:           S615, An Act relative to penalties for shoplifting

 DATE:      October 22, 2013

 I am writing in support of S625, An Act relative to penalties for shoplifting.

 I filed this bill in response to learning of cases where merchants were demanding hundreds of dollars of restitution from people (teenagers) who allegedly had shoplifted items worth less than $20.00.

 S625 would provide the following protections:


1)      Full disclosure to the accused



2)      Limit the amount that can be demanded outside of a court process, unless there has been a shoplifting conviction (existing law allows “actual damages” plus up to $500; the amended version would still allow a court to award this much to a merchant, but wouldn’t allow the merchant to simply demand $500 plus its unilateral estimate of actual damages as “settlement”)


3)      Impose sanctions for abusing this process


I hope that the Committee will report S625 favorably.

View testimony.