Will my new retail theft charges be considered my first offense, due to other charges being dropped previously?

UPDATED: Oct 10, 2011

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Will my new retail theft charges be considered my first offense, due to other charges being dropped previously?

5 months ago I was charged with retail theft in an amount exceeding $150. However my attorney got the charge dropped in court. A couple of days ago I was again charged with retail theft in which the amount was under $100. Will these new charges be considered a first offense since the others charge was dropped and will the old/dropped retail theft charge have any bearing on the legal ramifications I suffer from new retail theft charge?

Asked on October 10, 2011 under Criminal Law, Pennsylvania


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If you had been arrested previously for an offense but you never plead guilty, no contest or convicted as to the prior charges but the action was dismissed, then you have nothing negative on your record as to that proceeding.

As such, the new retail theft charges if you plea out or are convicted for them would be your first offense based upon what you have written. Since the prior charges were dismissed, they would have no bearing on your current situation.

I recommend that you consult with a criminal defense attorney about the current charges.

Good luck.

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