The Extortion Law

We were going around the room talking about transgressions in middle school and high school and shoplifting came up. My friend from Kansas said that his state had a strange law. If you got caught shoplifting, you could pay for the amount of the merchandise, leave it, plus pay the store $100. He'd taken advantage of this law once at a Sam Goody CD store during his reckless youth. We called it the extortion law, but now I'm more inclined to think it was the naive law. I suspect that the enterprising Sam Goody employees told him he could go to jail or pay $100, and he chose the latter, and in doing so helped to line their pockets a bit.

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