What are my options if I am charged with petty retail theft? 3 Answers as of August 19, 2011

I was charged for petty retail theft, what are my options? And do I need a lawyer to have a diversion course to be considered? This is my first time offense of any crime. I only have an affidavit to show up in court, no physical arrest. I would like this to be expunged, if possible.

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Michael D. Fluke, P.A.
Michael D. Fluke, P.A. | Michael D. Fluke
It is a matter of comfort, but you may not need an attorney to enter into a diversion program. You may consider going to your first court appearance and finding out if you are going to be offered diversion. Most diversion programs do not allow you to expunge the case upon completion, but will let you seal the case. I suggest you at least consult an experienced Criminal Defense attorney to discuss your case in greater detail and learn all of your rights and options. Good luck.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 8/19/2011
Law Offices of Karen Kilpatrick
Law Offices of Karen Kilpatrick | Karen Kilpatrick
As a first time offender, you will likely be offered pretrial diversion. A lawyer is not required to be offered this program. If your charges are eventually dropped due to diversion, you would be able to expunge.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 8/19/2011
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