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Debra, Lawyer
Category: Canada Law
Satisfied Customers: 100407
Experience:  Lawyer
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I am accused of shop lifting whats next?

Customer Question

I am accused of shop lifting whats next ?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Canada Law
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What do i do exactly? First time caught and arrested for shoplifting.
Expert:  Debra replied 1 year ago.

I am sorry to hear this.

If this is your first time then it is very likely that you will be able to get what is called "Diversion". That is where you can enter into an agreement with the Crown whereby you would essentially make amends to society in an alternative way. For example, you may be able to do some community service.

And if you do meet the conditions of your agreement then the Crown would withdraw the charge.

That is ideal as you would then not have a criminal record.

So what you can do is when you appear in Court speak to duty counsel who will speak to the Crown on your behalf and help work things out for you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What is a duty cousel? Sorry i am french.
It was for max 250$ or less so nothing too bad. Yes first offence.
Would i get a criminal record?
Im berry worried. I have a family husband and no jobm dont want to lose my kid and family.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Please help.
Im not feeling well cause of all this. I dont know why i did it. Store also banned me for 1 year in the store.
I cant sleep at night and always steessed
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  Debra replied 1 year ago.

Sorry for the delay.

Duty counsel is a lawyer that works at courthouse and is paid for by legal aid and will help self-representing people for free.

If you get diversion you will not have a criminal record.

There is no reason to be as worried as you are because this is your first offence and you will be able to come to the agreement with the Crown.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am worried of ending up in jail more then having a criminal record to be honnest. You really think i can talk to court to make an agreement to not have a criminal record?
I dont have a job so cause of that they wont feel sorry and do a diversion as i jave no chance of losing my job...
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
When i was 18 years (10 years ago) was accused of not sure how its called but hurting someone (i was the victim in this) but they were 2 against me but i ended up being dropped i only had to keep peace for a year.
Would that affect my case?
Ps im in quebec and it happened in ontario.. i had done my prints in Ontario then and now jave to do it for Québec sp they ll know. Even if i was discharged can it harm me?
Expert:  Debra replied 1 year ago.

You won't end up in jail. There is no possibility of that.

You don't speak to the court. You speak to the Crown who is the lawyer for the police really.

And duty counsel does this for you.

It won't matter what happened 18 years ago.

If the charges re withdrawn you can apply to have the fingerprints destroyed.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can i call court house monday tonsee if i am eligible for diversion? This happened dec 28th 2015. Would they know now if crown said diversion is possible?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Will the cops who arrested me be there to? And the security guard or manager of the store be there ?
Expert:  Debra replied 1 year ago.


As I've already explained you have to attend court on the date you were given and then you speak to duty counsel who will speak to the crown.

You cannot call the Crown now.

If there is a trial then they will be there but there won't likely be a trial because you are going to get diversion.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Do you know if all quebec court have diversion program that would bot give me a criminal record?
And what would bw the reasons why i couldnt get away with it ? Is there really chances of everything being dropped?Sorry im just super nervouse about all thism feel embarassed too. Feel bad
Would never do such a thing ever again.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
You honnestly think ill get diversion?If we are a family of 3. 2 adults 1 child. And salary of 41 000 together last year but now im not working and he makes 1800 monthly. Would i get free legal aid services ?
Maybe i should get a lawyer. If i have one can he go to court without me first appearance?
Expert:  Debra replied 1 year ago.

Criminal law is federal and so the law is the same throughout the country.

It is not the court giving you diversion. It is the Crown agreeing to this with you.

I believe your chances of getting diversion are very, very high.

I know you are embarrassed and worried but I would not tell you something just to make you feel better as that would hurt you so believe me when I say I am very confident that you will get diversion.

You cannot get legal aid as there is no chance of jail and you can only get legal aid if there is.

Duty counsel is good for you and you don't need to pay a lawyer for this.

You will have to go to court but that is the best way to get this worked out so don't be afraid to go.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I really hope i get diversion but what if the store security or menager knows me and tells the crown i deserve to be found guilty and pay for it.. can they do that?
Sorry ik just confused and very nervous.
Expert:  Debra replied 1 year ago.

They have nothing to do with it.

The Crown is not going to be asking them about this.

There is nothing to be confused about. I have explained the way the law works several times now so please just reread all I read.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Very nervous about all this. I feel so bad and dont want a criminal record
I shouldnt have done what i did but whats done is done i cant do anything about it.
I even offered to pay for everything. But they refused and because security guard knows me and doesnt like me at all and thats why she refused im sure.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
How do you think court date first appearance be like ? How do i fet diversion? I really need it. Sorry for all the questions im just super worried and nervous :( i keep crying.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  Debra replied 1 year ago.

This is the last time I am going to repeat this because it doesn't make sense for me to have to keep typing the same thing over and over again and it is now the middle of the night so we have to stop. I am a single parent of 4 kids and I really have to go to bed.

At the first appearance you will speak to duty counsel. That lawyer will help you in court that day and will speak to the Crown. That lawyer will tell you what to say and do and help you work things out. The Crown will agree to diversion because this is a minor offence and you never did this before.

After you do what you agree to do you will go back to Court and then the Crown will withdraw the charges. There will not be a trial.

Then you can apply through the police station to have your fingerprints destroyed.

Please just read this over several times if you are still worried and please rate me now as I just have to go to bed.

Expert:  Debra replied 1 year ago.

I spent an enormous amount of time with you and stayed up until close to 2 am and you closed this post without rating me?

Is that how you feel you should treat someone who spent all this time during the holidays at night trying to help you?

Do you actually feel that it is fair that I work for free? I don't. I am shocked and so disappointed. I certainly cannot afford to work for free and should not have to do so.

Please be fair and rate me positively so that I can get paid for my time.

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