What will happen if I am a minor and went shoplifting with my friends yesterday but got caught?

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What will happen if I am a minor and went shoplifting with my friends yesterday but got caught?

We had about $400 worth of items. It was my first time getting caught. And yes, I have done this before. Because I am a minor, they released me to my parents and I’m not exactly sure how much but I believe they charged us $800. My mom tried to ask if I can get community service. They said they weren’t sure. I was wondering if I could get juvenile detention or something if there’s no community service provided to make up for it or if my mom doesn’t want to pay the fine.

Asked on March 16, 2015 under Criminal Law, California

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

It is unclear the amount that you will be charged with here but both amounts fall under the threshold for a more serious charge in California.  So you will be charged with petty theft. The maximum penalty for most first time convictions are fines up to $1000 and up to 6 months in jail or both. Your parents should employ an attorney. The Prosecutor is more inclined to give you a diversion program with taking a class as a requirement when they see parental support and remorse but an attorney can help smooth things over. I am hoping that you have learned a lesson if not for your own sake but your parent's sake. 


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