How should I plead to my petit larceny charge?

I was arrested for shopliftig about $50 yesterday. This was my first criminal offense and I cooperated 100%. The arresting officer suggested that in court on Monday, I plead not guilty, ask for a lawyer to be provided to me and hope that I can get away with only a fine. Is that what I should do? I’ve never been in trouble before; I’m so scared.

Asked on July 21, 2012 under Criminal Law, New York


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Hopefully you have learned a valuable lesson with respect to your recent arrest. I suggest that you consult with a criminal defense attorney about your matter. Since the charge is a misdemeanor and since this is your first charge in the criminal justice system, the court may place you on court probation where you pay a fine, attend classes and do community service work over a certain period of time.

If you are successful in the court probation that you might be eligible for, the charge against you could be dismissed where you have no criminal conviction.

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