Holiday Crime: Shoplifting, Identity Theft, & Domestic Violence Penalties

Investigative Articles: A Deep Dive into Common Holiday Crimes And Their Penalties

The holiday season is a time to spread cheer and goodwill, but it also appears to be a time of increased criminal activity, as noted by statistics. During this period, people tend to be more vulnerable to crimes such as shoplifting, identity theft, and domestic violence. This article will look at these crimes in-depth, highlighting the reasons why they tend to occur more frequently during the holiday season, the penalties for committing these crimes, and what you can do to avoid falling victim to them.


One of the most common crimes committed during the holiday is shoplifting. With the increase in shopping and holiday sales, many people feel the pressure to buy gifts for their friends and family, even when they cannot afford it. Thus, they resort to shoplifting to avoid incurring more debt or to fulfill their family's expectations. Further, the crowds and rush of the holiday season make it easier for thieves to blend in and avoid detection.

According to Kolsrud Law Offices, which specializes in criminal defense, shoplifting is a crime under Wisconsin law, punishable by fines and potential imprisonment. If convicted, you could face up to 9 months in jail and be ordered to pay a fine of up to $10,000.

Identity Theft

Identity theft is another prevalent crime during the holiday season. It often happens when people make purchases online or in stores, and thieves obtain their credit card information. Thieves may also steal mail to obtain personal identifying information, such as social security numbers or account numbers. The joy of the holiday season can quickly turn sour when you learn that someone has stolen your identity and made unauthorized charges on your account.

According to Wisconsin state law, identity theft is a felony punishable by imprisonment of up to 12 years and a fine of up to $25,000. If you suspect that your identity has been compromised, you should report it to your bank or credit card company immediately, and contact law enforcement as soon as possible.

Domestic Violence

The holiday season can be an extremely stressful time, particularly for those in strained relationships. Factors such as financial pressures, increased family time, and substance abuse can all contribute to higher rates of domestic violence during the holiday season.

Domestic violence is a serious crime in Wisconsin, where it is defined as "Intentional infliction of physical pain, injury, or illness, intentional impairment of physical condition, or the violation of a restraining order or injunction." If convicted, penalties for a domestic violence offense can include imprisonment and fines, as well as loss of gun rights, and participation in a Batterer’s Intervention Program.

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do if I am accused of a holiday crime?

If you are accused of a holiday crime, you should contact a defense attorney as soon as possible. An experienced defense attorney can help you understand your legal rights and guide you through the legal process.

How can I protect myself from identity theft during the holidays?

There are several steps you can take to protect yourself from identity theft during the holidays. These include using secure websites for online purchases, being cautious of unsolicited calls or emails asking for personal information, and checking your bank and credit card statements regularly for unauthorized charges.

What should I do if I am a victim of domestic violence?

If you are a victim of domestic violence, your safety is the top priority. Reach out to a trusted friend or family member, and contact your local law enforcement agency for assistance. Additionally, you can seek the guidance of a domestic violence advocate or attorney who can help you obtain a restraining order or relief provided under the Violence Against Women Act, as amended.

Contact a Defense Attorney Today

Criminal activity is not inevitable during the holiday season. By staying vigilant and taking precautionary measures, you can minimize the risks of falling victim to crime or facing criminal charges. However, if you find yourself on the wrong side of the law, contact a defense attorney as soon as possible. An experienced attorney can help you understand your legal rights and help you navigate through the legal process in a timely and efficient manner. Protect your freedom and avoid unnecessary penalties by calling a defense attorney today.

Holiday, Penalties