What do you do about a false theft charge? The prosecutor keeps pushing it and i don’t see why. the court apointed lawyer doesn’t seem to care.

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What do you do about a false theft charge? The prosecutor keeps pushing it and i don’t see why. the court apointed lawyer doesn’t seem to care.

My girlfriend bought a tv for roughly $1200.00 when she was in school. After graduating she move and took it to storage. Her roommate filed a police report saying she stole the tv. It went to trial but my gf did not know so she didn’t show up, after an arrest now she is deeling with it. My gf does not have the reciept but does have the bank record, she was told that the girl that filed the report withdrew her statement, she has a few roommates that saw the tv and one that went with her to get buy it. Is it worth it to push it to jury trial or do you think this could be settled before that.

Asked on May 9, 2009 under Criminal Law, Washington

Answers:

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

From your question, it looks like your friend may already have been tried and found guilty.  If that is the case, she will need to show a very good reason for her failure to appear for the trial, to have the case re-opened.

Even if the trial was not completed, your friend will still have to explain her failure to appear.

Your friend might be able to get a duplicate receipt from the store where she bought the TV, especially if she used a debit card.  I would have her look into that as soon as possible, since the store probably does not keep those records indefinitely, and in this economy there is no guarantee that the store will still be in business next month.

Since your friend has a lawyer, the prosecutor almost certainly cannot talk to her without her lawyer's permission.  If her lawyer is not doing his or her job, your friend might consider getting an opinion from another lawyer in your town.  One place you can look for counsel is our website, http://attorneypages.com

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Prosecutors generally want to see justice done and do not want to bring innocent people to trial. The problem is so many  criminals claim they are innocent that the prosecutors are dubious, and rightly so. Not showing up for a court date makes the prosecutors even more dubious.

If someone the prosecutor respects (typically a lawyer) asks for a meeting and brings in real evidence that your girlfriend bought the set, and statements from the roommates that the set was your girlfriends, and statements showing the complainant made inconsistent statements, the prosecutor can drop the charges.


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