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Michelle
Michelle, Elected/Appointed Official
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 4136
Experience:  30 + yrs in the legal profession incl. criminal, family, politics, legislator judiciary 6 yrs
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I was charged with felony shoplifting from a retail ...

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I was charged with felony shoplifting from a retail store at our mall...the total was originally $294 which is a misdemenor and then went to $362 which is felony...I live in the state of GA and I am a first offender, I want to get this lessened to a misdemeanor or dropped, What can I do? Also what is the general sentecing for a misdemeanor and the fine. I have NEVER been in trouble before.

Dear Customer

Why was the amount changed causing it to become a felony charge, if you know?

I will assist you and gather the other information, while you provide that additional

Thanks ~ Michelle

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Reply to Michelle's Post: They said that they forgot to add in an article of clothing...the paper was already written up and then changed to reflect the new total...

Dear Customer

Thank you for that additional information and your patience while I gathered and typed this information for you

Charges can be amended - so that is not a defense. However, you can try to discuss this with the DA and see if you take a plea if they will reduce it to a misdemeanor. They do not have to, and can move forward with the felony. Then you can ask them for probation and community service which upon successful completion would be removed from your records.

Punishment for most misdemeanors is up to 12 months in jail. Fines for most are up to $1000, but can be as low as $300 for certain offenses.

Felony shoplifting is a 1-10 year offense. Note, that if you have a subsequent conviction, for either a misdemeanor or felony shoplifting charge there is a mandatory 12 months in jail.

Best of success to you with this matter,

 

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
One more thing and I don't know if this would make a difference or not the items where on sale for 30% off but when totalling the amount that was not calculated into the equation. I apologize for any stupidity here as I have never dealt with anything like this before

Dear Customer

No problem. It is my pleasure to assist you. You could try to use the fact that the items were "on sale" as a bargaining chip to have the matter reduced to a misdemeanor. Though when dealing with shoplifting and other theft it is the original retail price that they base it on.

 

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Reply to Michelle's Post: I am sorry I did not understand "that is not a defense" part of the answer.

So even with this being a first offense I will go to jail for a min of a year? I can't do that! What are my chances of getting it dropped to a misdemenor?
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
I have a steady job, am involved in the community, I don't know why I did it. But I can't go to jail.

Dear Customer

Please re-read what I wrote. I stated if it you have another offense it will mandate one year in jail. At this juncture, since it is your first, that is not mandate (must be) sentence. I think you could work to get it reduced or consult with a local attorney to assist you with getting it reduced to the misdemeanor.

Here is what I wrote orginally, please read it carefully... I know you are stressed, but you must take time to read what was written or I can be of no assistance to you

Charges can be amended - so that is not a defense. However, you can try to discuss this with the DA and see if you take a plea if they will reduce it to a misdemeanor. They do not have to, and can move forward with the felony. Then you can ask them for probation and community service which upon successful completion would be removed from your records.

Punishment for most misdemeanors is up to 12 months in jail. Fines for most are up to $1000, but can be as low as $300 for certain offenses.

Felony shoplifting is a 1-10 year offense. Note, that if you have a subsequent (meaning if this happens again) conviction, for either a misdemeanor or felony shoplifting charge there is a mandatory 12 months in jail.

Best of success to you with this matter,

 

 

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