CRIMES AND PUNISHMENTS
LARCENY AND RECEIVING STOLEN GOODS
18-4626. Willful concealment of goods, wares or merchandise — Defense for detention. (a) Whoever, without authority, willfully conceals the goods, wares or merchandise of any store or merchant, while still upon the premises of such store or merchant, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000) or by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than six (6) months, or by both such fine and imprisonment. Goods, wares or merchandise found concealed upon the person shall be prima facie evidence of a willful concealment.
(b) Any owner, his authorized employee or agent of any store or merchant, apprehending or detaining a person on or in the immediate vicinity of the premises of any store or merchant, for the purpose of investigation or questioning as to the ownership of any goods, wares or merchandise, shall have as a defense in any action, civil or criminal, that such detention of the person or persons was in a reasonable manner and for not more than a reasonable time to permit such investigation or questioning by a peace officer or by the owner of the store or merchant, his authorized employee or agent, and that such peace officer, owner, employee or agent had probable cause to believe that the person so detained was committing or attempting to commit an offense as set forth in subsection (a) of this section. "Reasonable time" shall mean the time necessary to permit the person detained to make a statement or to refuse to make a statement, and the time necessary to examine employees and records of the store or merchant relative to ownership of the merchandise.
[18-4626, as added by 1972, ch. 336, sec. 1, p. 941; am. 1973, ch. 258, sec. 1, p. 510; am. 2005, ch. 359, sec. 9, p. 1136.]