Legal Question in Criminal Law in Missouri


I was caught stealing 56.90 worth

of stuff from sears. They are going

to find me upwards of 250.00 and I

have a court date on July 17th.

What should I expect next. They

didn't arrest me or anything just

gave me a ticket. Am I going to

have to pay more in fines and do

time in jail. This is my first offense

aside from a speeding ticket. What

should I expect?

Asked on 6/13/09, 4:40 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Michael R. Nack Michael R. Nack, Attorney at Law

Re: Shoplifting..

I strongly suggest that you hire an attorney to represent you. You do not want to take a conviction on this charge. The money you paid to Sears is not a fine. There is a statute which provides for a store to make demand for civil damages on a person charged with shopliftng. The criminal case against you is entirely separate. Your attorney will interview you and then obtain all of the evidence that the prosecutor intends to use against you. After that the attorney can advise you whether it would be best to proceed to trial or to negotiate a plea bargain. In many of these cases a plea bargain can be worked out to avoid jail time, avoid the conviction, and also to avoid paying substantial fines to the court. If you do not already have an attorney, I have handled hundreds of these cases in the thirty years I have been practicing law. You may call me for a free telephone consultation.

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Answered on 6/14/09, 11:25 pm
Michael Harvath Harvath Law Offices-INJURY case representation

Re: Shoplifting..

Hi. I am a Missouri attorney that handles criminal defense issues as well as injury and workers' compensation claims. Assuming you have an attorney assist with this, the attorney most likely will be able to work out a plea agreement with the prosecutor, where you may potentially receive a suspended imposition of sentence or perhaps some community service, rather than receiving potential jail time and a conviction on your permanent record for stealing. A conviction of this type can impact your ability to obtain future employment. The fact that you indicate you have no prior offenses will help, but some negotiation with the prosecutor will be required to avoid a conviction of stealing. What county of Missouri (I am assuming St. Louis City or county, based on your zip code) did this occur in? I can be reached via e-mail at [email protected] Thank you.


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Answered on 6/14/09, 1:23 am

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