The ADJ hearing is a "civil" matter. The 2nd degree theft is a "criminal matter." The burden of proof
is MUCH HIGHER in a criminal matter. The prosecutor must prove EACH and EVERY element of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt in order to convict you of the crime.
The fact that the appeal was dismissed by your employer and that the ADJ's finding of "no misconduct" can only help you. If you have already been charged, you may wish to disclose the finding of "no misconduct" to the prosecutor and ask that the charges be dismissed. But, remember, that the "no misconduct" finding was in the civil arena. The criminal matter is different.
Iowa law considers second-degree theft a Class D felony, which carries a prison term up to five years and a minimum fine of $750, with a possible fine up to $7,500. You can face conviction of second-degree theft if the value of stolen goods is over $1,000 and but not more than $10,000, or if you steal any vehicle valued at $10,000 or less.
Therefore, you may wish to contact an attorney who specializes in criminal law. Sometimes, an initial consultation is free. You can discuss the specific facts of your case, evaluate your options and decide how to proceed. If you are convicted of a "theft crime," it can make finding a job difficult. An attorney can assist you "pre charge" (if you haven't been charged yet) and if you have already been charged. It may be possible to get the charges dismissed or reduced if your attorney can work out a plea bargain
with the prosecutor.
Below please find a link to the Iowa Bar Association attorney referral page.
Again, the finding of "no misconduct" can only be helpful. But, unfortunately, the prosecutor can still proceed against you if s/he believes that s/he has enough evidence to prove you guilty of the 2nd degree theft BEYOND A REASONABLE DOUBT. That is a VERY high burden. The prosecutor must prove EACH AND EVERY element of the crime BEYOND A REASONABLE DOUBT. That is why you should speak to a criminal law attorney.
I hope you find this information useful.
My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back. I am happy to address follow-up questions. If you are satisfied with my answer, please rate it as "excellent" or in another positive manner. That is the only way that I can get credit for answering the question.
Thank you for your business!