Frank Walker Law Shoplifting Attorney Morgantown

The Hidden Costs: The Dangers of Shoplifting for WVU College Students

Frank C. Walker II Jan. 8, 2024

Your time at WVU is a time for personal growth, learning, and building a foundation for a successful future. However, some students are drawn into dangerous behavior, such as shoplifting, which can have dire consequences. In this article, we will explore the significant dangers associated with shoplifting for college students and why it is crucial to steer clear of this illegal activity.

1. Legal Consequences

Shoplifting exposes students to severe legal risks:

- Criminal Charges: Shoplifting is a crime that can result in criminal charges, leading to fines, probation, community service, or even incarceration.

 - Permanent Record: A shoplifting conviction can result in a permanent criminal record, which can affect future employment, housing, and educational opportunities.

 - Civil Lawsuits: Storeowners have the right to pursue civil lawsuits against shoplifters, which can lead to financial liabilities beyond criminal penalties.


2. Academic Impact

Shoplifting can significantly affect a student's academic pursuits:

- Academic Penalties: WVU has a strict code of conduct. Engaging in shoplifting can lead to disciplinary actions, including suspension or expulsion.

- Loss of Scholarships: Many scholarships and financial aid programs have stringent requirements for maintaining a clean record. Shoplifting convictions can lead to the loss of financial support.


3. Emotional and Psychological Impact

Shoplifting can have profound emotional and psychological effects:

- Guilt and Shame: The act of shoplifting often leads to feelings of guilt and shame, which can take a toll on mental health.

- Stress and Anxiety: Fear of getting caught, along with the legal and personal consequences, can lead to heightened stress and anxiety.


4. Impact on Relationships

Engaging in shoplifting can damage personal relationships:

- Loss of Trust: Friends and family may feel betrayed if they discover your involvement in illegal activities, leading to strained relationships.

- Associations with Criminals: Shoplifting often involves associating with individuals who have criminal backgrounds such as DUI, violent offenses or drug offenses, potentially putting you in dangerous situations.


5. Long-Term Consequences

The ramifications of shoplifting can extend far into the future:

- Limited Career Opportunities: A criminal record related to shoplifting can severely limit your career prospects, particularly in fields that require background checks.

- Difficulty in Securing Housing: Landlords may be hesitant to rent to individuals with shoplifting convictions, making it challenging to find suitable housing.

- Financial Burden: Legal fees, fines, restitution to the victim, and civil judgments can lead to significant financial burdens.



While these consequences may seem unlikely, they are in-fact common and detrimental. Society links shoplifting to being untrustworthy—being thought of as untrustworthy is extremely detrimental in every area of life. Although it's essential to navigate the complexities of college life and financial challenges, shoplifting is never a viable solution. Prioritizing responsible and ethical behavior is essential for protecting your well-being, future opportunities, and personal integrity.

If you or someone you know is involved in shoplifting, it's crucial to seek help and support. College campuses often have resources available for students facing legal or emotional challenges. Remember that there are better ways to achieve success and fulfillment in college and beyond, and they do not involve the high risks and grave dangers associated with shoplifting.

About Frank Walker Law

Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law is a National Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer, and Personal Injury Attorney who has been recognized as a Super Lawyer, a member of the National College for DUI Defense, Best Attorneys in America, Best Law firms of America, America’s Greatest Attorneys, and a Top AVVO Rated attorney, with offices in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and Morgantown West Virginia.

Additionally, you can find Attorney Walker on YouTube, TikTok, the Pittsburgh Attorney Podcast and the West Virginia Attorney Podcast, where he gives legal tips (not advice!) and discusses the pressing legal issues of the day.

If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or are seriously injured in an accident, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at 412-532-6805 (Pittsburgh), 304-413-0179 (Morgantown), 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation in a Civil Case.