Teenage sisters sentenced for shoplifting

Court orders community service and compensation

Two sisters, ages 18 and 19, were sentenced this week after pleading guilty to theft from Foster’s Food Fair of goods valued at $58.88. 

Magistrate Valdis Foldats ordered each defendant to pay $100 compensation and perform 20 hours of community service. 

He said paying compensation is important because it is a recognition of the cost of shoplifting. Stores have to pay for cameras and security guards, and the costs have to be passed on to the consumers.  

“When you shoplift, you hurt everybody,” he pointed out. 

Crown counsel Eleanor Forgin said the offense occurred on Feb. 7. A security officer saw one of the sisters take items from the shelf and place them in her handbag. She paid for some items at the check-out point, but then left the store without paying for the items in her handbag. 

The second defendant did not steal anything, she but accompanied her sister and knew what she was doing. She also made a few purchases, the court heard. 

Stolen items included body wash and hair accessories. 

When the sisters were stopped, they immediately admitted the wrongdoing. They said they were sorry, but they had no money to pay for the items. 

The magistrate thanked both young women for their early guilty pleas, which, he said, showed they were taking responsibility for their actions. 

Mr. Foldats said the 18-year-old had made a foolish mistake but had then cooperated and showed remorse. He said he would not record a conviction in her case because she was very young, but he did require her to sign a bond to be of good behavior for one year. 

For the older sister, the magistrate noted that the author of her social inquiry report had expressed concern that she was not working and not going to school, but needed to do something. He followed the recommendation that she be placed on probation for one year in order to receive supervision. 

A condition of her probation is that she actively seek employment and attend any programs as directed by her probation officer. If the probation period is completed successfully, she will not have a conviction on her record. 

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  1. I don’t agree. We are looking at a crime that is caused by the ridiculously high price of goods and services. We are not realizing it’s going to get worse before it gets better. the low wages given to the low level job earners will give more reason for them to steal.
    A country that has low taxes to none ,.should not have these kind of prices . We are making it happen.

  2. Personally I agree with the decision to not send them to jail if it was the first offence, however I do think the amount of compensation should have been more like $1,000. $100 is nothing and not really a deterrent not to do it again.

  3. I have mixed feelings about the sentencing. Be that as it may. It’s done. Shoplifting is a very serious crime, no matter whether committed by children, adults or anyone in between. An eighteen or nineteen year old knows that shoplifting is a crime that’s why the stolen items were concealed. Shoplifting adversely affects the company (cost of doing business), employees and consumers. It adds to cost of items we purchase. Remember that stocked items in the store are already paid for, hence theft results in a loss to the company. If the perpetrators didn’t have the money, for whatever reason, why not speak with management. Maybe consideration would be given. Whereas the second defendant did not actually steal the goods, she was an "accessory to the crime," being fully aware of the intent and action. Under Cayman law, I don’t how this is dealt with. From all appearances, the theft was premeditated. I hope this case, though much leniency has been shown, will send a message to those who would be inclined to do likewise.