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S. Huband, Esq.
S. Huband, Esq., Attorney
Category: Criminal Law
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IF you steal $2 dollars from the cash register of y our

Customer Question

IF you steal $2 dollars from the cash register of y our employer or $1 dollar, can they charge you with embezzlement or can you settle out of court?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  S. Huband, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for the opportunity to assist you.
Q) If you steal $2 dollars from the cash register of your employer or $1 dollar, can they charge you with embezzlement or can you settle out of court?
Yes and yes.
Actually, your employer wouldn't charge you with anything; it's the police or prosecutor who take out criminal charges. They'd do that based on the statements and other proof offered to them by your employer. The employer may be the complaining witness, but the charges are not prosecuted by your employer.
Embezzlement means taking the property of another person when you already have lawful possession of it. If you were working as a cashier, you have permission from your employer to handle their money. But if you took their money while working as an employee - any amount of money - and kept it for yourself, that's embezzlement.
As for settling out of court, that's called a plea bargain. Since this is such a small amount of money, perhaps you can get a plea bargain where the charge will be dismissed in return for paying back the money, maybe doing some community service, staying out of trouble, etc. It would be a shame to have a conviction on your record for two bucks.
In some states this charge is punishable by possible jail time. If so, you are entitled to a court appointed attorney if you cannot afford your own attorney. Ask for one when (or before) you go to court. If you want to hire an attorney, you can do that, too. I'm suggesting getting an attorney so that the attorney can evaluate your case and determine where you have the best chance of having a positive outcome.
I hope my response has been helpful. If you have follow-up questions or concerns on this topic, please ask. I'll get back to you as quickly as I can, although I may not be online at the moment you respond.
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Best wishes to you, Customer

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