Can anyone offer me information on whether or not you can get into Law Enforcement with a petty theft record?

Asked about 2 years ago - Boynton Beach, FL

I was charged with petty theft back in college, first time offense ever in my life! No record not even a speeding ticket. I made a foolish mistake and I would like to get into Law Enforcement or the Military and serve my country. Has anyone dealt with this kind of issue and is it possible to pursue in my goals. I would like to no my options if I have any so I can get my life on a better track. Thank you.

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Karen Jean Tufte

    Contributor Level 11


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Generally, yes. I personally know 2 deputies who had a petit theft charge when they were younger and are no law enforcement officers. You will need to explain what happened & qualify in all other aspects. I'm sure that this 1 mistake will not prevent you from a successful future in your chosen career. Good luck!

    Karen J Tufte
    Board Certified Criminal Trial Attorney

  2. Eric J Trabin

    Contributor Level 19


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . There are people who have made some minor mistakes and have still been accepted into a law enforcement agency. Petit theft may or may not impact your ability to get a job in law enforcement. On one hand it is a very minor offense but on the other it is considered a crime of dishonesty. There is no way to say conclusively what it will do.

    This is not to be considered legal advice nor does an attorney-client relationship exist.
  3. David Richard Damore


    Contributor Level 16


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Follow your dreams . Both the military and law enforcement should not be closed based on one minor mistake. Hell, there are lawyers with a whole lot worse on their records.
    It wouldn't hurt to get the record sealed but even doing that won't hide it from law enforcement or the military.

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