Can I bring a felony down to a misdemeanor?

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Can I bring a felony down to a misdemeanor?

I am 18 years old and was arrested for stealing a $2,500 lap top from a car. I was intoxicated on prescription medications. I received a felony. I got out on bail yesterday which was set at $5,000. This is my first arrest.

Asked on September 30, 2011 under Criminal Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

It is possible to get the charges reduced, such as from a felony to a misdemeanor, but it is far from a given that you can do this--especially since you stole something worth far more than the threshold for a felony. Also, being intoxicated is *not* generally a defense to a crime. That fact that this is your first offense is, however, in your favor. Get an experienced defense attorney; a local one, who knows the prosecutors office and judges; your best bet to get the charge reduced is to have an experienced lawyer negotiate with the authorities on your behalf. If you try to do this yourself, you will have a very small chance of success. Good luck.


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