Client Exchanged Her Own Earrings After Store Refused; Arrested on Petit Theft Charges

Charges Dropped!

The Charges

Department Store Loss Prevention Officers witnessed the Defendant remove a new set of earrings from the packaging. The Defendant then took her old earrings and placed them into the new packaging. The Defendant placed the new set of earrings into her purse and left the store. Loss Prevention Officers stopped the Defendant and contacted Police. Police arrested and charged the Defendant with Petit Theft.

Deferred Prosecution Program

The deferred prosecution program was created to keep offenders out of the court system. It is a contract between the offender and the state, which requires the offender to complete all conditions of the program in order to have charges against them dismissed. Their record will then be expunged.

Conditions that are typically in the deferred prosecution program include:

  • Paying the costs of prosecution
  • No new violations
  • Completing a certain amount of community service
  • Complete a specified counseling program
  • Making a donation to a charity or charitable cause

The contract can be revoked if the offender violates the terms of their deferred prosecution program. The original charges can then be reinstated.  

Record Expungement Qualification Criteria in Florida

In order to have a record expunged, there are certain criteria that must be met. The criteria must be met exactly as written, as it is not flexible. This criterion is as follows:

  • The offender has never been found guilty of a misdemeanor, felony, or criminal ordinance violation. This includes both juvenile and adult.
  • The offender has never had a record expunged in the state of Florida.
  • The offender is not currently on community control, probation, or any other court supervision.
  • The crime must not be on the Does Not Qualify for sealing or expungement list. Crimes that do not qualify for this include luring or enticing a child, arson, aircraft piracy, homicide, robbery, manslaughter, and carjacking. However, if you were not found guilty of the crime or your charges were dismissed, your record can be expunged even if the offense is listed.

Benefits of Expunging a Record

Many benefits can be gained by expunging a record. These include:

  • Your offense will not be public record.
  • Your privacy is protected. This is essential for when you are job hunting, apartment searching, or applying for financial aid for college.  
  • Expunging allows you to legally deny that you were arrested.

An experienced attorney at Musca Law Firm can assist one in having your record expunged. We will make it as simple as possible for you.  

RESULT: The Defense proved to the State that the Client had no intention of stealing the earrings. The Client only wanted to exchange the exact item for her broken pair after the store refused to take the earrings back. In an effort to keep the Client out of the Court system, the Defense arranged for the Client to enter into a Deferred Prosecution Program. The State DROPPED all charges against the Client. The Client is now eligible to have her record expunged.

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