shoplifting detained?

If a store employee says she's detaining you for suspicion of shoplifting, what should you do? also what are your rights...do I have to show her my purse? should i keep my hands behind my back?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    Merchants can legally detain you if they have reasonable information you stole something. Many states also allow them to use reasonable force to detain you, but that could vary.

    Your Fourth Amendment rights of search and seizure apply to the government, and not to private business, so those rights are not applicable.

    Source(s): 17 years law enforcement
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  • 1 decade ago

    If a store employee say's she is detaining me for suspicion of shoplifting then I would asked her what did I shoplift? She should provided evidence of CCTV camera or security guard witnesses who will tell me he or she saw me pick up some items or grocery. Ok I will tell them where is this items in me. I would show them my bag if I carry one and empty the contents of it. And if the employee doesn't see the item or items she describe in me, then I can file a complain to the store manager concerning such harassment. No you do not have to keep your hands behind your back this is not a police matter or procedure. You are inside a store not a police precinct or you are not under arrest but under interrogation by an employee of the store.

    THAT IS WHY EMPLOYEE HAS no rights to detained store customers for such violation that is why the store hired SECURITY PERSONNEL to handle such things inside the store. Those who will detained you are security guards either in uniform or in civilian clothes and not just store employee. The job of the store employee is obviously to attend to customer's needs not detained shoplifters.

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  • 1 decade ago

    if a store employee tries to detain you, you stop where you are and tell them to call the cops. go nowhere with them. stay where they are plenty of people. do not give them your purse or wallet or anything that belongs to you. wait in place for the police to arrive. do not even identify yourself. they have no right to touch you, take your things or harass you. do NOT go into their back office with them or even go sit behind a counter. simply stand there. if they refuse to call the cops, then call them yourself on your cellphone.

    if you are innocent, then you have nothing to worry about and the police will be there to help you. if you did steal something, then be completely honest with the police officer and take what's coming to you as a learning experience.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Here's an idea that might be beyond you: DO NOT shoplift (or commit any other crimes) and you will not need to worry about it.

    Edit: LOL at the shoplifters who will give thumbs down because not stealing is too far above them.

    Source(s): Common deceny and common sense.
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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Its best to cooperate otherwise you could face further charges or the employee might get physical. There is a forum site that deals with such questions you might try your question there as well

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  • 1 decade ago

    Yes, they can detain you. If you don't like it ask them to call the police, but don't be surprised if you end up leaving in the squad car.

    Source(s): 12 years law enforcement
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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Personally I'd fight my way out. Shop owners are not cops and do not have the right to detain you.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Well, you are innocent until proven guilty, but it probably would help to show the contents of your purse to prove you didn't steal anything, granted, of course, that you actually didn't steal.

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  • 5 years ago

    If she tells you to put your hands behind your back its best to just do so, that way she can cuff you.

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