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The Day I “Tried” To Steal From Claire’s

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Stealing from Claire’s, a true story.

My early teen years were a complete mess.

I was a runaway, cutter, and a druggie, and the following story is the by-product of that lifestyle.

On one of my many teen angst adventures, I tried stealing from Claire’s, and the consequences were much more significant than I could have ever imagined.

You honestly have to be an idiot to try shoplifting from Claire’s! The stores are tiny, and they usually have mirrors that line the tops of the walls. Mirrors, in addition to cameras, make stealing very difficult, not to mention the jewelry is crazy cheap! 

From Runaway To Teen Thief

It started like any other day. A group of my “friends” decided that since we had nothing better to do (like go to school), and we should head to the mall. I have no idea if I had smoked pot that day (I did most days so it wouldn’t be a shocker), but on this particular day, I decided I was brave enough to try my hand at thievery.

Walking around the store for a while, just browsing when I spotted a pair of earrings. I thought, “I could easily gank (white-girl thug for steal) these.” So I grabbed them off the peg and proceeded to walk around the store while ripping off the paper holder. I shoved them in my pocket and headed for the door. At this point, my friends were already out the door when I heard her: “STOP … DON’T LEAVE …WHAT’S IN YOUR POCKET?” I froze while my friends stood there, trying to get me to leave the store.

You see, this entire lifestyle just wasn’t me. If you knew me, you would have never in a million years thought, I would be “that girl, stealing from Claire’s.” The girl on the side of the road with over-sized Jnco’s, dirty green hair, and a cigarette hanging out of her mouth.

I was against smoking, stealing, and fighting. I wanted to feed the children and save the whales. Somewhere along the way, I got derailed, and here I was facing the clerk, trying to choose between running or suffering the consequences of my actions.

I Wasn’t Cut Out For This Lifestyle

I started to cry and handed the earrings over to the cashier. She had already called the police, and the cop was walking in to file the report. The officer took me to the back room and asked if I had cash ($3.98 to be exact) to pay for the earrings.

I was a runaway, and I had nothing. The officer took down my information and asked for a form of ID, but I didn’t even have that. Then he tried calling my parents, but they were on a business trip to the Bahamas. The officer said that without ID or an adult to claim me, I would have to go to JAIL.

jail time for stealing from claires

I had just turned 16, and I was going to jail.

Doing Time 

I cried for the rest of the day and all night. Jailers don’t care how old you are; they still strip-search you like they would any other inmate.

It doesn’t matter what crime you commit; you are placed in the general population until you get sentenced.

That was the longest night of my life. The cell I was in was one big holding cell.

Everyone slept, showered, ate, and lived in one BIG room. The other older inmates thought it was shocking that I was in for stealing from Claire’s. I think they mostly took pity on me, though they did try to frame me by putting prison wine in my pillowcase. Inmates, no matter how nice, can never be trusted! 

I had a friend in the area, so I called her, and she got her dad to bail me out and take me home. In court, the judge sentenced me to time served and 1 yr probation.

It Only Got Worse From There

I was in a low place, and it didn’t get better for about a year after that.

I broke probation by quitting school and moving in with my boyfriend (who is now my husband). For breaking probation, I had to do weekends in jail in my hometown (that’s a post for another time).

I wasn’t making the best choices before this incident, but it’s crazy where one wrong decision can lead.

Now, I am the person that drives back to the mall because I realize my toddler took one shoe off the shelf, and it fell into the basket under her stroller (true story).

So what about you? Have you ever stolen or tried to take something? Was your experience similar to mine?

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Gennavei Antoniette Maurenzia (Gennie)

Saturday 11th of September 2021

heyy!! I actually have a similiar story I was 14 when this happened and yes Ive neen caught before. I was at the mall browsing through my usual bath and body works and the icing run and at that point i felt okay with my purchases but i had no money left qnd i started eating my wetzels pretzels when i spotted kohls and remembered a girl in my class had gotten ariana grande mists from there so i gave it a shot and told my mother id be back and went in to kohls perfume, cosmetics area and sure did i find it. I got the sweet like candy and thank u next ones. i noticed they had alarm tags on them but i was quite dumb and took them off. I was so close to the door when someone yelled out “HEY” and stopped me really quick *i tend to zone out a lot* i forgot i had them in my backpack and they proceeded to ask “where are the cosmetics you took” “what cosmetics” i asked then I remembered and my heart sank. “I just need u to return them please.” “PLEASE DONT TELL MY MOM” i cried out. He said he wouldnt but that he needeed it back. he gave me a lecture and i never stepped a foot in kohls since. 16 now! And now i do have all of arianas perfumes haha. Personally paid now though. And its been on my mind atleast 2x times each week. I was so immature and hated myself. It was so depressing thinking I was gonna get caught and just to be a cool person who had tons of jewelry, perfumes, lotions, bodywashes and to be that girl lol. It happened on february 2020! I remember being totally upset. Never happy. Dont shoplift. It may be funny or fun at first but as you continue. Its an addiction and makes you unhealthy! Please continue staying a clean person that doesnt fear a policeman walking around the stores.

Tracy Robertson

Saturday 16th of August 2014

I wasn't a bad kid (and I don't think you were either) but I did that a handful of times as a teenager until I got busted and my parents were called in. That put a stop to it real fast! What baffles me now is everywhere I shop I hear theft alarms going off left and right and store employees never seem to bat an eye anymore. I wouldn't steal now because I'm an adult and know that it it WRONG, but it seems like people can get away with it these days. Odd.

Annie @ Mama Dweeb

Tuesday 29th of March 2011

Wow Shasta! Knowing you now it is hard to believe you were that girl back then. I went through a very similar time. I hung out with the JNCO, smoking, skipping school kids. They called us "hoodrats" and no one liked us. Cussing, we had no respect for authority. Well, I kinda did. I hung out with them cause I had no other friends. But I had more respect for myself than they did for themselves and eventually I buried my nose in books and hung out with them less.

But I related to your story. I related to the person you where cause I was that same person! Thank you for sharing, it really moved my heart.


Monday 28th of March 2011

Probably stole something as a little kid, but I was pretty messed up as a teen. It wasn't good. Did some bad and crazy things, and only by the grace and mercy of God was no one ever hurt because of me and I was never arrested. Trust me, there were more than enough times. I'm so very far from that lifestyle, but things still aren't easy for me. Doubt they ever will, but it's ok. Not much can be done about it now as it is.

Thanks for being so transparent!

Nina Say

Monday 28th of March 2011

Well, I think everyone has their teenage years issues. As a teen I never stole, but I was completely rebellious and resented my parents. I did a lot of sneaking out and partying...but I think as long as we grow up one day we are fine.

A lot of the people my age are still playing childish games with their lives. All that matters is that you are a great person now!

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