Mall thief turns himself in, “Finders Keepers” does not apply: Kingston Police

Kingston Police say the thief of a gym bag at a local mall has turned himself in and all items have been returned to its rightful owner.

On January 19, 2018 Kingston Police issued a media release in regards to the theft of a shopping bag with recently purchased merchandise. The release and an image of the suspect was posted to social media.

On January 23, 2018 the suspect attended police headquarters to turn himself in and the merchandise was safely returned to the owner.

Kingston Police say the incident drew some discussion on social media as to whether or not simply taking the apparently abandoned bag was a theft. The definition of theft is defined in the Criminal Code of Canada as follows:

  • 322 (1) Every one commits theft who fraudulently and without colour of right takes, or fraudulently and without colour of right converts to his use or to the use of another person, anything, whether animate or inanimate, with intent
    • (a) to deprive, temporarily or absolutely, the owner of it, or a person who has a special property or interest in it, of the thing or of his property or interest in it.

As such, Kingston Police advise that it was in fact a theft, for these reasons:

-The property was not intentionally abandoned, it was misplaced;

-the property had a rightful owner;

-the suspect had no colour of right to the property;

-and the property was taken with the intent to deprive the owner.

However, since the merchandise was safely returned, the owner of the equipment has opted not to proceed with charges.