If I was arrested at a store for shoplifting two sweaters for a total of $130.00 what will happen to me when I got to court? 8 Answers as of February 12, 2014

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Michael Breczinski
Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
You will want to plead NOT guilty and get a lawyer. This is because if you plead guilty right away then you give up ALL bargaining power.? The lawyer may be able to get a deal where you end up with no criminal conviction on your record.? This is huge. These records are permanent. What employer wants to hire a thief? How will you get a job?
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 2/12/2014
Universal Law Group, Inc. | Francis John Cowhig
Depending on the amount allegedly stolen and the jurisdiction where the event occurred, shoplifting can be met with a mere citation (infraction), or charged as a misdemeanor or even a felony, with possible jail sentences of 6 months to 3 years. It will be up to the D.A. to determine how the crime will be charged. I suggest that you hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to represent you and get you the best deal possible.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/12/2014
Law Office of Jeff Yeh
Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
Petty theft is a crime of moral turpitude, and if convicted you can kiss your career aspirations goodbye. Hire a lawyer before you get duped into a plea you will regret for life.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/12/2014
Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
In Washington, you committed a gross misdemeanor. It has a sentencing range of 364 days in jail and $5,000 fine. If this is your first offense, you will likely be required to attend a consumer awareness class, do community service, pay a fine, pay restitution, stay away from the store, have no further law violations and be on probation for one year. You will also have to pay a civil fine to the store.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 2/12/2014
The Rogers Law Firm
The Rogers Law Firm | Andrea Storey Rogers
The judge will ask if you are pleading guilty or not guilty. If you plead not guilty, the judge will set your case for trial. If you plead guilty, the judge will sentence you. The maximum penalty in Missouri for misdemeanor (under $500) shoplifting is 1 year in jail and a fine of $1,000. You can hire a lawyer to represent you if you want to keep this off your criminal record. Your attorney can probably get the charge dismissed or amended to a lesser offense, such as "Littering." You will have to pay a fine and court costs, but you probably won't have to appear in court. If you plead guilty or are convicted, the shoplifting conviction will stay on your criminal record forever, and it will prevent you from getting a job, renting an apartment, getting federal student loans or regular bank loans.
Answer Applies to: Missouri
Replied: 2/11/2014
    Law Office of James E. Smith
    Law Office of James E. Smith | James Smith
    Diversion or probation is likely.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 2/11/2014
    Law Office of Mark Herman
    Law Office of Mark Herman | Mark Herman
    Theft in the amount of $130.00 is a misdemeanor which carries penalties of up to 90 days in jail and up to a $1,000.00 fine. You don't say if you have any previous criminal convictions which could impact how the prosecutor proceeds with the case. Pleading guilty to this charge can effect various aspects of your life such as seeking employment. If you have no prior criminal record it is important to try to keep this off your record. I recommend you talk with an attorney to see what can be done.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 2/11/2014
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly | Brendan M. Kelly
    Get a lawyer prior to your court date and you likely will have the charge dismissed.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 2/11/2014
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