Legal Question in Criminal Law in Florida

Good Morning, i got caught shoplifting in walmart and the value of the merchadise as per them was 356.00 .This is my 1st and only time shoplifting due to money problems at home.I dont have a criminal record was so ever. I was taken into their office and they fill out alot of paperwork but i didnt sign anything.They call the police and they took me to jail.The police didnt read me my miranda rights. I spend one night in jail and was bail out the following morning. Im in the process of doing a education program to show the judge that i wont do this again.What can i expect in this type of situation. Do i get a public defender ?!?please advise and thank you in advance

Asked on 9/10/13, 6:29 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Craig Epifanio Craig Epifanio, P.A.

You should definitely either hire an attorney or if you can not afford one, get a public defender. You may be eligible for a diversion program that your lawyer can help facillitate.

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Answered on 9/10/13, 6:48 am

Thomas Rosenblum Rosenblum Law Offices

Hello: 2 things...

First---You should be careful what you admit to on this website or anywhere else. I doubt the State is looking here...and if the State saw this, they might have problems proving it was you. Nevertheless, in future discussions, you should be more vague and use words like "allegedly" or " if a person took some groceries..."

As for the case, the State must make a filing decision as to what charges will be brought...unless that has already been done. If not, the State can file it as charged, drop the charges (esp. if there was any errors by police, etc.), reduce the charges to a misdemeanor (less than $300.00) or divert the case to a program where you enter an agreement with the State Attorney's Office to perform com service, pay fine, etc. Once you complete the agreement, they drop the charges. In that situation, the court is not involved. If the State has not made a filing decision yet, you should immediately get an atty. to call the Assistant State Atty. assigned to the case to try and influence the filing decision.

Good luck. Tom Rosenblum

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Answered on 9/10/13, 8:12 am

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