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Toronto Shoplifting and Theft Under $5000 Charges Lawyer

Mail theft: porch and doorstep parcel related theft under $5000 charges

With online shopping growing more and more each day, parcels left on people’s doorsteps through mail deliveries from Amazon, Wal-Mart, etc. are a frequent target of theft in the Toronto area. Such thefts usually occur during the daytime while the homeowner is at work. They may be calculated in advance or an unplanned opportunity crime. Small but expensive electronics, jewelry, and cosmetics are the most frequently targeted items.

Adults who get caught will most often be charged with theft under $5000 and/or possession of property obtained by crime. There may be multiple counts depending on how many houses were targeted. If the accused is under age 18 at the time of the offence they will be charged with the same offences under the YCJA (Youth Criminal Justice Act) which requires that the Police serve the child’s parent or guardian “Notice to Parent” paperwork informing them of the charges.

How most people get caught stealing packages from doorsteps.

The two main ways the police gather evidence to charge is through eye witnesses and security camera footage. The eye witness is often a neighbour or a local watching the community after being stolen from themselves. For homes with security systems they are most often placed in an obvious way to deter potential thieves. Doorbell cameras are also gaining popularity (Ring, Nest, etc.) and are regularly used in prosecuting porch theft cases.

Stolen items for sale on Kijiji, Craigslist, LeoList, etc.

Police will often tell victims of porch theft to monitor sites like Kijiji and Craigslist to see if a new listing appears for the stolen item(s). Many times the thieves will want to unload the property as soon as possible by selling it at an obviously marked down price online. Police will also sometimes conduct stings/busts to specifically identify individuals trafficking stolen merchandise. These stings usually involve an undercover police officer purchasing the stolen property and then arresting those involved. It is considered an aggravating factor to traffick the stolen items (as opposed to personal use).

Public shaming of the accused thief via the internet, social media, etc.

The help of the public is often used in identifying the suspects caught on camera. The doorstep video footage can be uploaded to social media platforms like YouTube and Facebook in an attempt to identify the individual(s) involved and can go viral. Sometimes news organizations pick up on these stories and report them (causing them to show up in Google searches). The police force can also issue a press release looking for information on the suspect. Porch/doorstep thefts have a much greater chance of having the suspect's identity publicly exposed than a regular theft under $5000 case.

When the suspect's identity is publicly outed their reputation is permanently damaged which can negatively impact both social relationships and employment. In some cases this stigma/public shaming is even more damaging than the punishments imposed by the court upon a finding of guilt.

Porch / Doorstep mischief charges

In some instances the accused may be additionally (or solely) charged with the offence of mischief under $5000. It is a criminal offence to interfere with someone else's property. If any damage occurs during the crime (perhaps to the security camera(s)) mischief charges would also be included.

Some individuals will open the box to see what the item is before deciding whether to steal it or not. The act of opening the box itself is mischief and they will be charged accordingly. A theft charge is often also included. If the box was opened on the step and then discarded the suspect may only receive the mischief charge depending on the discretion of the police. More commonly the box gets opened in a location close to the house where the theft occurred.

If you are charged with a porch or doorstep related mail theft it is important that you consult a lawyer immediately. These crimes are taken very seriously and you are subject to a criminal record and jail upon being found guilty.

Call us today for a free assessment

You don't have to jeopardize your future or waste thousands of dollars on excessive legal fees. We provide effective and affordable lawyer representation for those charged with all forms of theft and fraud related offences throughout Ontario, Canada.

Have a skilled criminal lawyer who focuses on theft and fraud related charges protect you and your future from the stigma and consequences of a criminal record.

Your case will be defended by a fully licensed Practicing Lawyer of the Law Society of Ontario. For more information about our lawyer, click here.

We provide our clients with:
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* Please note:

If you are not a paying client, we cannot answer questions and provide assistance with U.S. travel, immigration, employment background checks, and avoiding a criminal record. This includes those who have already retained other counsel and those whose cases have already been completed. We also only take calls/emails relating to Ontario, Canada area cases.

Are you a lawyer? If you are defending a theft or fraud related case and are looking for expert advice regarding possible defences, case strategies, and information release management call us at: 647-228-5969.

Please note: We do not accept legal aid certificate cases. All clients are handled on a private retainer only.


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  We provide:
  • Flat fee pricing
  • 99%+ non-conviction success rate
  • U.S. travel advice and information
  • Help with related immigration issues
  • Employment background check advice/services
  • Fingerprints and records destruction services
  • A clear goal of getting the charges dropped without a trial
  • Vulnerable Sector records suppression help
  • Timely resolutions
  • Lawyer/client privilege
  • Experienced, focused counsel