What will happen if I was accused of 3rd degree retail fraud?

This is my first offense.

Asked on July 16, 2015 under Criminal Law, Michigan


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

The fact is that shoplifting is a criminal offense, so it would be a good idea to consult with an attorney. An experienced lawyer might be able to get the charge dismissed on a technicality or possibly get it reduced. Since you are a first-time offender, you will propbably offered something alled "diversion". This is an alternative sentencing program; what happens is that you plead guilty to the charge, receive a special probation and upon its successful completion the charge is withdrawn and the case dismissed. Your criminal historyrecord should be automatically cleared.

However, diversion is typically only available to first offenders, therefore if you again get into trouble you will not be eligible for it. That's why if you get an attorney who gets the charge dismissed, you could could place in a diversion program in the future you should ever need it.

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