What are the options for pleading gulity to a misdemeanor of larceny of merchandise from a retailer

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What are the options for pleading gulity to a misdemeanor of larceny of merchandise from a retailer

I have been going to court since August of 2008 for a misdemeanor of Larency of merchandise from retailer. I was unaware of the fact that my sister and her friends were planning on stealing. They ran out of the store with the items and jumped into my car, me being nervous and since my sister was involved I drove off and we were stopped and taken into custody. I now have pending charges and im still going to court since august of 2008. My next court date is this month and my lawyer wants me to just plead guilty and have a deferred one year sentence because if I take it to trial i will loose since i was the one driving. I currently cannot get a job and I just received my Medical assistant license and I know that have charges will disqualify me for employment. I want to know is there anything else that I could do to where it wouldnt show up on my record and it can be dismissed. I’ve never been in trouble before.

Asked on May 6, 2009 under Criminal Law, Oklahoma

Answers:

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

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

 Deferred Adjudication (DA) is plea bargain agreement between a defendant and the court in which formal judgment is withheld or "deferred" pending the outcome of a probation period. If an individual is given deferred adjudication and he or she successfully completes the probation and conditions assigned by the court, the charges are dismissed. In order to obtain DA from the court, the defendant must enter a plea of "guilty".  Note, however, even though charges are dismissed your arrest record remains.   

In Oklahoma pursuant to Section 991 (c) of the criminal code an arrest record can be "expunged" (changed or removed).  This allows the indiviudual to have the disposition of their case updated to read "not guilty" and that the case was dismissed.  The record however will remain.

Employers may see this and you will have to explain it to them.  Depending on who does the hiring this may or may not affect your future employment.  However, if you feel that another attorney can do a better job for you now is the time to go and get another opinion.  That's not to say that your current attorney is wrong.  In fact, he's more than likely correct in his assessmant of your case since he has all of the facts before him.  But since this DA will have permanent consequences for you I think you should consider at least speaking to one more lawyer, if for nothing else than to give you peace of mind that obtaining a DA is the right thing for you.

 

J.M.A., Member in Good Standing of the Connecticut Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

I am a lawyer in CT, not OK, but i practice criminal law.  Your situation is completely understandable and unfortunate.  I would ask your lawyer whether there are any kind of programs that the court has that allows you to do some kind of community service or other where the charge is dismissed upon successful completion.  This way, you can save your medical assistance license.  If your lawyer is not responsive to you, I would get a second opinion from another lawyer.  The fact that you have no record and appeared to have no idea what was going on, looks good.  The fact that the shoplifter is your sister is not good.  I would also look at the medical assistance license rules and regulations as to whether you can be re-admitted if arrested and what the procedures are. 


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