So I was caught shoplifting the other day and the police were involved. No arrest was made. They just gave me a ticket and asked me to pay a $100 fine. There was a Request for court hearing but the police who gave me the ticket told me that I can go to it in hopes of lowering the fine but he discouraged me not to go anyway cause I admitted I did it.
Should I just pay the fine to end this whole fiasco cause I'm confused about what to do.
Do not pay anything until you discuss your legal options in full confidentially with a local practicing attorney, otherwise doing it recklessly without a counsel would be creating a second fiasco for your future's employment and educational prospects.
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Criminal Defense Attorney
Police officers are among the worst people to turn to for legal advice.
Contact an attorney and discuss your case. Despite your alleged admission, there may be alternative dispositions that could result in charges being dropped.
Paying the fine will require a plea of guilty and will likely result in a conviction.
1 lawyer agrees
It's most likely best to pay your fine and be done with it (assuming it's a municipal non-criminal ticket) because there is not a strong cost benefit to contest it. Typically, municipalities add court costs if you go to court. So your ticket could be $190 if you go to court. However, if you are a minor (under 18) community service may be available. All that being said, it is always advisable to consult with an attorney about your specific situation.
This is not intended to be legal advice and no attorney client relationship exists by virtue of this answer. Your matter may be time sensitive and you may lose your right to purse the matter via the passage of time. It is always advisable to speak with a lawyer and discuss the merits of your claim or defense.
Criminal Defense Attorney
You should absolutely confer with an attorney prior to paying this ticket. Shoplifting, or Retail Theft, is a crime of dishonesty, and even if it is just a local ordinance "ticket", prospective future employers may be able to see the public record of the case. Many are reluctant to hire someone who has such a case, even if it is not charged under State Law as a misdemeanor ticket. Many jurisdictions offer a diversion program if you go to court, such that if you complete an anti-theft course or perform volunteer work, they will dismiss the ticket outright. While it may prove more costly in the short-term, the long term effect of just paying a fine can be significant.