Accused of stealing from hairdresser

Ask a Lawyer

Question

Country: United States of America
State: Virginia

I went to get a haircut by someone who has known me for years. My mother was going to drop me off and pick me up later. My appointment was at noon.It takes a while to cut my hair so my mother said she would be back at 12:45p.m. to pick me up. My stylist was finished at 12:30 so she decided to go to lunch with her partner. It was cold outside so I asked if I could stay in the corridor that leads to her shop and she said no for me to stay in her shop and to lock up when I left. So when they left I finished fixing my hair and I looked out the window for my mother to go by so I could be on the sidewalk when she pulled up. When my mother went by I unlocked the door, opened it and then locked and pulled it close. Then I left and got in the car. The next morning my stylist called and said that a bottle of hair stuff was missing and that I took it. Well I told her that I didn't take anything and that I would never steal from anybody. She didn't believe me so she hung up. Later that day a Lt. from the county sheriff's department called and asked me some questions confirming that I was in her shop by myself. Then he said that in a court of law that I would be found guilty due to consequential evidence and that he could come to my house and take me to jail. Then he asked me if I would be willing to take a polygraph test and I said yes I would. So he asked what would I do if I failed and I said I wouldn't because I didn't take anything then he interrupted me and said that I couldn't do anything to prove I was innocent. So he then said that he had been doing this for 10 years that my stylist didn't want to cause any trouble that I should pay her 10.00 for the stuff or take the hair stuff back and apologize. I again said that I didn't take anything and he said I couldn't convince him. I talked to someone and they said that taking the money over there would be like confessing that I did it. So I didn't take her any money. I later found out that this Lt. is old friends with my hairstylist. As of now she has dropped the case. The Lt. said that my stylist wanted me to be aware that she knew what happened that day at the shop and that she didn't care about the money. I talked to town cops and they said that the way the Lt. handled the matter was wrong that he should have came to my house instead of calling me and that the incident happened in town and that the County Sheriff's Department was out of jurisdiction. Everyone that I have talked to said that it sounded as if the Lt. was harassing me. I always thought it was innocent til proven guilty but the way this Lt. is speaking its guilty til proven innocent and that there is no way to prove that I'm innocent. This whole accusation has tore my nerves up. I don't like being accused of doing something I didn't do. Stealing to me is one of the worse things anybody could accuse me of especially by someone that I thought was my friend. So I was wondering if there was any legal action that I could take against my stylist or the Lt.? Thank You very much for taking the time to read this.

Answer

They are allowed to investigate; but if she says anything publicly that is false you could sue for damages...