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Can any lawyer take on a petty theft case (PC 488)?

Irvine, CA |

Hello. I was arrested at my local university bookstore. I took $90 worth of stuff. First time offender.

I know that petty theft is bad but I found that petty theft is one of the more common cases attorneys work on. I am currently shopping for a good lawyer and I have found different lawyers that specializes from a slew of specialities from family attorney to business litigation to criminal defense. I was particularly wondering if any attorney can successfully defend (or better, dismiss) my case or should I hire an attorney who specializes in criminal defense? Thank you in advance.

Attorney Answers 8

  1. This is a case for an experienced criminal defense attorney and not a family or business lawyer. You need someone who knows and works in the criminal courts. While it may not be the crime of the century as a young person the last thing u want on your record is theft conviction which can be very damaging. Hire an experienced defense attorney. Many of us offer free consults, call around for advice.

  2. Your case is hugely important. Don't hire a podiatrist to perform your brain surgery, correct? Hire a podiatrist to help you with foot problems and a neurologist to work on your brain. If you are a student studying to earn a degree, a $90 theft can wipe away the value of your $90,000 education (perhaps more valuable and expensive than that) because now you are a convicted thief first and foremost in the eyes of a potential employer, not someone with a bachelor of science in mechanical engineering, for example. Do not hire any attorney. Hire a criminal defense attorney with at least ten years of experience and who regularly appears in the court where your case is venued. Good luck.

  3. A criminal defense attorney with experience can handle this matter. No attorney can guarantee outcome. A theft offense can haunt you for a long time. Speak with a few attorneys. Find one you are comfortable with.


  4. You definitely need a criminal defense specialist. Many of us on Avvo can help you and offer free consultations. Make some calls so that you can start building your defense.

  5. Contact a criminal defense attorney for best results.

    The response above is not intended as legal advice since it’s impracticable to provide thorough, accurate advice based upon the query without additional details. It is highly recommended that one should seek advice from a criminal defense attorney licensed in your jurisdiction by setting up a confidential meeting. Moreover, this response does not constitute the creation of an attorney-client relationship since this message is not a confidential communication because it was posted on a public website, thereby publicly disclosing the information, which is another reason to setup a confidential meeting with an attorney.

  6. You definitely need an experienced criminal defense attorney, not family law, etc. Contact an attorney in your area ASAP. If you are on Avvo you will be able to find a good lawyer in your area. Good luck!

  7. I would recommend that you hire an attorney who focuses his practice in criminal defense and has a lot of experience in this field. I handle Criminal Defense and DUI Defense. If someone called me looking for a business litigation help, I would refer them to an attorney more familiar with the business litigation area of the law. I would assume a business litigation attorney would do the same.

    Legal disclaimer: This message does not constitute legal advice and is for informational purposes only. This message does not establish an attorney-client relationship, which can only be established once a retainer agreement has been fully executed between you and this firm.

  8. You need to get a Criminal Defense attorney's assistance on this matter as quickly as humanly possible. In situations like these the petty theft and conviction are really not the worst part of the repercussions. The damages that this can do to your credibility as a potential employee in the future can be far worse than the crime itself. Most employers are wary of hiring anybody who has a criminal record, add in the fact that this was a theft related crime and it makes you much less likely to be called for an interview. You need to have this dealt with in a professional manner and ensure that your rights are protected. Further I would refrain from stating any actions you may or may not have taken. You can say what you have been charged with but do not talk about any of your actions before you have a chance to speak with an attorney.

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