LAW 511-002 – Torts I

Shopkeeper's Privilege


A shopkeeper has the privilege to detain a person for a reasonable investigation when he reasonably believes that person has shoplifted.

A investigation's reasonableness is determined by whether it was inside or outside, how long it lasted, and what the shopkeeper did to investigate.

The majority rule says that a shopkeeper cannot condition release on confession to the crime or payment.

Reasonable force, short of bodily harm, may be used to detain the suspected shoplifter.