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xavierjd, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 3400
Experience:  Over 20 yrs experience in prosecution and defense work
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I am a 66 year old first-time offender in CA ,stole a $14 item

Customer Question

I am a 66 year old first-time offender in CA ,stole a $14 item from a store and was charged with a 45 9PC .My court date is in three weeks and I am a nervous wreck about going to jail. Since I`m a senior exixting on small social security, I can`t afford an attorney and am scared stiff of being incerated. Will I go to jail?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  xavierjd replied 8 years ago.

Thanks for using


459. Every person who enters any house, room, apartment, tenement,
shop, warehouse, store, mill, barn, stable, outhouse or other
building, tent, vessel, as defined in Section 21 of the Harbors and
Navigation Code, floating home, as defined in subdivision (d) of
Section 18075.55 of the Health and Safety Code, railroad car, locked
or sealed cargo container, whether or not mounted on a vehicle,
trailer coach, as defined in Section 635 of the Vehicle Code, any
house car, as defined in Section 362 of the Vehicle Code, inhabited
camper, as defined in Section 243 of the Vehicle Code, vehicle as
defined by the Vehicle Code, when the doors are locked, aircraft as
defined by Section 21012 of the Public Utilities Code, or mine or any
underground portion thereof, with intent to commit grand or petit
larceny or any felony is guilty of burglary
. As used in this
chapter, "inhabited" means currently being used for dwelling
purposes, whether occupied or not. A house, trailer, vessel designed
for habitation, or portion of a building is currently being used for
dwelling purposes if, at the time of the burglary, it was not
occupied solely because a natural or other disaster caused the
occupants to leave the premises.


If you are convicted, it is considered Burglary in the Second Degree, punishable by imprisonment not exceeding 1 year in the county jail or state prison.


Although I cannot guarantee anything, it is VERY doubtful that you would go to jail if you were convicted. In fact, it may be possible that you are eligible for a diversion. A diversion happens when you are placed on probation for a period of time. If you do not get convicted of anything else during your probation, and you complete all other terms (eg. pay fine, stay out of the store), then at the end of probation, the case may be dismissed and your record remains clean.


If you can't afford an attorney, you can ask for a court appointed lawyer to represent you. Or, before your court date you can contact a lawyer who specializes in criminal law. You can contact your local bar association for a referral. It may give you 2 or 3 name. You can contact the lawyer(s) for a telephone consultation or ask to set up an appointment. Sometimes these consultations are free.


Good Luck to you.


I hope that you find this information useful and that you PRESS THE GREEN ACCEPT BUTTON. This is for informational use only and does not replace the advice or assistance of an attorney licensed to practice law in the applicable state.