Psychological and psychiatric aspects of shoplifting

Med Sci Law. 1990 Jan;30(1):45-51. doi: 10.1177/002580249003000110.


This paper reviews the relevant psychological, criminological, and psychiatric literature on shoplifting, with particular emphasis on implications for clinical issues and involvement. The paper provides a conceptual framework for working with shoplifters and highlights the need for careful assessment before treatment is embarked upon. It is emphasized that shoplifting is not a unitary category either in terms of motives or clinical problems and no one model can adequately explain the phenomenon.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • England
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Theft / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Theft / prevention & control
  • Theft / psychology*