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Should I be worried and scared about going to court?
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Should I be worried and scared about going to court?

Tomorrow I have a court arraignment. About a month ago I got caught shoplifting a pair of jeans. The jeans were 165 dollars. I was arrested and given a court date which is tomorrow. I have never been in trouble with the law and have never been to court. I am so worried and scared... I do not know what to expect and I do not want to go to jail. I know now that stealing is wrong and I regret ever doing it. What should I do and say? Please help me. I am only 18 years old and I do not want to mess up my life. Also on my citation it says "theft 3" and I live in Washington.


    




Kate
165 is my lucky number u should be fine lol


Edward D
Rating
wow this really is scary i think uy shouldnt be worried just make butterflies out ur stomach and drink lots of water before going hope u luck and not to jail....
-worried for you
x3 hpe i helped


MikeyMike
Rating
You deserve it for trying to steal pants. Yes, you should be. Bring in an extra shirt, because the one you're wearing will probably have sweat-filled pits.


private
Rating
If you were in need, why didn't you steal a pair of 19.99 jeans? They should throw the book at you, because that is why we have to pay such high prices is because of thieves like you. Get a job and save your money if YOU NEED 165 pair of jeans.
They will probably just make you pay a few fines, and maybe community service. I think maybe you're sorry you got caught, hope you never do it again. You know that could cost you a good job in your future? I wouldn't hire you if I had another applicant that was just like you, without your record.


heather
Rating
Do you have a lawyer?

You will probably get probation and community service.


NekrofeliaGirl
Seriously, don't waste your money on a lawyer. The judge will give you an option for sentencing, that is if you plead guilty he will tell you what he will sentence you to, if you aren't happy with that then you can say that you want to speak to a lawyer first. More than likely you will have some fines to pay, community service and pay a fee to the store you were caught shoplifting from. Theft 3 is third degree theft, under $250 so it's pretty minimal.

For court, don't be scared but don't be too confident either, it's normal to be nervous. It's hard to get a hold of public defenders and I was told I wouldn't even be able to talk to one until after the judge heard my case. I doubt you will go to jail, it's very unlikely. Just be honest with the judge and be remorseful. I had court for a similar charge and the judge didn't even ask me or a story. It went by very quickly and just said what my sentence would be if I plead guilty, and was given 4 days community service in lieu of some hefty fines & unsupervised probation. A lot of the courts and jails/prisons are full of people with more serious and violent crimes so a theft this small (although wrong) won't get you in deep trouble.

You can also ask the judge about getting your charge expunged in the future (about 2 years) as long as you don't get yourself into anymore trouble.

Good luck, you'll be fine!


Wise Idiot
Rating
Did u talk to any lawyers?


peterpan
it should be fine

just act like you are sorry (which you really are), dress nicely, behave nicely...you do have a lawyer right? if you have a lawyer, you probably won't have to say anything at all

and if its your first offense, you will probably just get community service or a fine. i cant imagine any judge would send you to jail for stealing a pair of jeans


R
As long as you're clean, dressed appropriately, and mannerly then things shouldn't be too bad. I've only been to court as a witness, but found it a bit intimidating an experience. Don't let it get to you though. I'm sure you'll be fine, especially since it's a first offense!


Fabio
Nope, dont worry about that you might just walk away or get community service hours. What you should worry about is what job are you going to get. No one is going to hire your dumb ***,, sorry about the insult, im just being real. Once it says theft on your resume, then, well you get the point.

Would you hire and trust a thief?


Ohh wait a minute, it says Theft 3, ohh your ******, that's like robing a car, your gonna go to jail sorry..


Kasey
Why in the ****...


Guy
Rating
The punishment will be nothing, you wont get jail time if its a first offense. However, the effects on you getting a job with that on your record is what I would be worried about. This can ruin the next 7 years for you when it comes to getting a job because background checks usually go back that far. I worked at Google and a security guard in the downtown area of my city harrassed me so I grabbed my license from his clipboard and tryed to run (I originally gave it to him, but he started becoming abusive and trying to scare me so when he went to tie his shoe I took advantage of the situation as I saw him as abusing his authority and not letting him do that would be the right thing to do, I regret it all the same though). His clipboard was considered "his personal effects", so they charged me with misdemeanor assault for touching his clipboard. I almost ended up working at Mcdonalds at 26 years old. From Google to Mcdonalds, over that. My charge was just a misdemeanor and this society is very unforgiving, even for that. Stealing is probably just as bad to an employer since most employers have businesses, and things which can be stolen. I'm lucky I started my own business or I would be at Mcdonalds right now, no doubt. They love to take productive people from society and turn them into useless beings for a 5 minute mistake, but let people like Vick have their million dollar jobs back after years of torturing other living things, go figure. Sick society we live in, but what can ya do?
I'd start formulating a plan now as far as a career for the next 7 years. That's the only thing I'd be worried about.


edit:
Saphire, good point, saying that he should have taken $19.99 pair of pants. Then again, WHEN DID HE EVER SAY HE WAS IN NEED? Good point if it was actually referring to something he said, bad point since he didn't say anything about being in need.


Lisa S
It sounds like you ar eon your own...no lawyer?

The thing is, you will have a hard time making a case a judge wants to listen to. You shoplifted a luxury item---and happen to be a legal adult.

Not a major charge---but one he/she might not mind making an example of.

I don't know your codes, but this also sounds like it exceeds petty theft.

Be polite, dress decently, and answer the judge as well as you can.
I doubt you will get jail time...but you will have to explain the cirminal record for theft for the rest of your life...tough.


sheldonlinker
How best to handle this is a question for a lawyer, not us. An arraignment is not a trial. It's just a discussion of what the plans are. Your reasonable choices are to (a) get a lawyer, (b) ask the court for a lawyer, or (c) tell the court that you haven't had time to get one. Depending on the rules in Washington, the Judge may ask you to plead Guilty or Not Guilty, or may set things aside until you have a lawyer. If the judge demands a plea, you can plead Not Guilty and then get a lawyer, or refuse to answer, and the Judge may enter a plea of Not Guilty on your behalf.


roscoedeadbeat
Tell the judge " Your Honor- I have never been in trouble with the law and have never been to court. I am so worried and scared... I do not want to go to jail. I know now that stealing is wrong and I regret ever doing it. Please help me. I am only 18 years old and I do not want to mess up my life."

You will probably get community service or maybe even a suspended sentence, which would keep you out of jail, unless you ever did this again, in which case you would serve this sentence, and the one for that crime too.


xnarutogirlx21
Rating
well i think since it was just a pair of jeans and you do feel really really sorry for doing it (state this in court) you might get off at worst with community service and if you do go to jail it might be for a day but idk im just making an educated guess, but im betting on the community service.


JJ
Don't worry about it, kid. You think this is bad? How about those people who murder other people? How do you think they feel when they go to court?

In the end, you'll probably just be given a few hours of community service here and there and a fine that you'll have to pay for the crime (small only $165) of shoplifting.


Erin
Rating
They'll probably ask you not to get in trouble for a certain amount of time and then dismiss your case.


♪ ♫sadeyes♫ ♪
Rating
slap on the wrist. you'll get fined myabe community service, but that should be it. good luck.


hdg94dub
nah


ckmfarms
Rating
they should lock you up ..thieves like you add about 24% to the cost of any item that honest people have to pay for...but they probally wont do anything..feel blessed you live here in other countries you would have a hand cut off so you will be marked for life as a thief..btw i hope you get something stole from you ..


JMakk805
Rating
dnt wrry bout it its a piece of cake all u do is answer the questions they ask
HONESTLY DONT LIE haha


John A
The best advice I can tell you. Don't lie, just tell the truth.


David M
Rating
Obviously you have a lawyer that speaks for you, he will speak on your behalf.
You have made a mistake, there will be consequences, learn from this and you will become a better person.

Good Luck to you, I hope you will become a better person because of this.


Jimmy B
Your first offense, probably just a slap on the wrist or something really easy.


Majj
since its your first offence you shouldnt really worry
the judge will scare you and talk to you about what you did
just say what you said here ''I know now that stealing is wrong and I regret ever doing it''
the worst you will get is a fine
just stay calm whene your in the court case
make sure you look smart and clean
and if you do it again dont get caught
or they will **** you up


♬ Life™
Were they like True Religion jeans. That's pretty damn expensive for a pair of jeans.


i be pimping fat chicks
mcdonalds?
nah it would of been better if u were 17 but u should be fine.


lovely bones
you will be fine! i was shop lifting when i was 16 and i was on probation for a year but only cause i was being nasty with the pl there. my friend got a slap on her wrist. recently i was arrested about 3 months ago i have court Thursday, i was shop lifting again and this time i have a lawyer, although i am guilty. but i know since i have it on my juvenile record they would use that against me.





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