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Arizona Court to Rule if Shoplifters Deserve Jury Trials

An Arizona appeals court is set to issue a ruling today about whether people accused of shoplifting are entitled to jury trials.

The decision stems from a Peoria woman who got pinched for shoplifting and was denied a jury trial by a Maricopa County Superior Court Judge last year, CBS 5 (KPHO) reports.

The penalties for shoplifting are often relatively minimal -- probation, or community service -- and the judge seemed to think calling in a jury wasn't necessary.

However, a 1978 Court of Appeals Ruling determined that even folks looking for that small five-finger discount are entitled to jury trials.

The ruling is expected this afternoon.

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