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Black Friday shopping leads to criminal charges for two women

"Black Friday" is either a much-loved or much-hated part of the Christmas season. Someone's opinion on Black Friday often depends on whether that person loves the fantastic bargains and holiday spirit or hates the massive crowds and crass commercialism. Either way, on Black Friday stores in New York are packed with customers. Unfortunately, two women in Clarkstown, New York, found themselves facing criminal charges after shopping on Black Friday.

One woman has been charged with shoplifting clothing from a Macy's department store. The items she allegedly stole were worth over $1,200. The crime was allegedly witnessed by loss prevention employees. The woman, age 61, has been charged with possession of stolen goods and grand larceny -- both felonies.

A second woman was also charged with possession of stolen goods and grand larceny. These charges came after loss prevention employees at the Palisade Mall's Lord and Taylor store reportedly witnessed the theft. The woman, age 41, is also accused of stealing clothing worth over $1,200.

Larceny is a type of theft crime. It usually involves the non-violent, unlawful taking of another's property. While these cases may seem open-and-shut, this is far from the truth. The prosecution bears the burden of proving each element of a larceny charge beyond a reasonable doubt. If the prosecution cannot carry this burden, the individual charged with larceny cannot be convicted. This is one of the cornerstones of our nation's criminal justice system. Everyone is innocent until proven guilty. Those who have more questions regarding larceny and any possible defenses can get more information to review their options.

Source: New City Patch, "Clarkstown Police: 2 Black Friday Shoplifting Episodes," Lanning Taliaferro, Dec. 1, 2014

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