Can felony charges be reduced to dropped for a first-time offender if the victim doesn’t want to prosecute?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Can felony charges be reduced to dropped for a first-time offender if the victim doesn’t want to prosecute?

I entered my church at night and took a TV. i was arrested at the scene for BURGLARY, TRESPASSING, POSSESSION OF BURGLARY TOOLS, AND THEFT. The D.A. has charged me with BURGLARY AND THEFT. i have a clean record and the act was done under the influence of alcohol and the church is trying to have the charges dropped. Could the charges be changed to misdemeanors or dropped all together? And is jail time likely? Should I speak with a criminal law attorney? In Yuma, AZ.

Asked on June 11, 2011 under Criminal Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

DEFINITELY speak with a criminal defense attorney--you have, as you note, committed a felony, and could easily go to jail for more than one year and also suffer other civil disabilities (e.g. no voting; a criminal record which could impact getting a job).

Yes, the charges could be reduced to a misdemeanor, or even dropped altogether. It is up to the prosecutor's office whether to do that. The prosecutor will usually consider the factors you name, including the wishes of the victim, but is no obligated to do what the victim requests--if this DA wants to take a hardline or make an example of you or show he's tough on crime or that he protects churches or whatever, he could go ahead. That's why, even though you do have factors in your favor, you should get a criminal defense attorney to advise and represent you.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption