vandalism 5000 or more

I had my son arrested for vandalism to my truck stereo and passanger mirror, he is out of jail now and has told me he will pay for the damage can I have the courts drop the charges on him since he has agreed to pay for the damages or should I just not come to court so it gets thrown out

Asked on June 1, 2016 under Criminal Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

First, you can ask them to drop the charges, and they very well may agree to do so, since vandalism is, comparatively speaking, a minor crime affecting only property, so if the victim doesn't want it prosecuted, the authorities will generally go along with that. However, be aware that they are not required to drop the charges: once you put the criminal process in motion, it is out of your control and under the control of the prosecutor's office, which could choose to prosecute over your objections.
If you don't show for trial, they may dismiss; or they may adjourn the case to a later date and subpoena you to appear. If you are subpoenaed and fail to appear, you will be subject to punishment, including potentially jail time.
If you do work things out with your son, get his agreement to pay in writing, with a specific payment schedule, so you can enforce it (e.g. sue him for breach of contract) if necessary.


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