Michigan has three degrees of retail fraud: 1) first degree retail fraud which is where $1,000 or more stolen or if you have a prior conviction and get a 2nd degree retail fraud charge, which carries a penalty as a felony of up to 5 years in prison and/or $10,000 fine (or 3x merchandise's value); 2) Second degree retail fraud which is where $200 - under $1,000 stolen or if you have a prior conviction and commit a 3rd Degree retail fraud, which is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 1 year in jail and/or $2,000 fine (or 3x merchandise's value); 3) Third degree retail fraud which is where under $200 is stolen and this is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 93 days in jail and/or $500 fine (or 3x merchandise's value).
In addition to criminal penalties, MI also provides that a shoplifter may also be subject to civil penalties demanded by the store, including the full retail price of unrecovered property or recovered property that is not in salable condition, and civil damages of 10 times the retail price of the property, but not less than $50.00 and not more than $200.00.
See: MI Retail Fraud Ordinances.
As these are criminal offenses, you are entitled to an attorney and if you cannot afford one you can get a public defender and you should indeed show up with an attorney if at all possible.
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