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What do I do? Theft misdemeanor?

Fresno, CA |

In December 2010 I was caught shoplifting at a Kohl's. When I showed up for my court date in March 2011 I was told that my name was not in the system that they couldn't find any reason I should be there. .they gave me the number for the DA's office and they also said the same thing. So a few months later I go to the same court house to pay a traffic ticket and they say that I have a warrant for the theft? So at this point I don't know what to do?

Attorney Answers 3

  1. You should look into hiring an attorney to go in and recall the warrant for you. After the warrant has been recalled you then have to fight your case. You may be able to file a due process motion, but the fact that its only been a year may help. Did you move from your residence that you were living at when you got cited?

    Elliot Zarabi

  2. At this point, what you do is hire a lawyer to defend you on the theft charge. If you can't afford one, they will appoint the public defender. There is no due process issue here. Good luck to you.

  3. The most important thing is to get that arrest warrant recalled. The judge cannot do that until the matter gets put on calender. In order to get the matter put on calendar, you need to go down to The Fresno Superior Courthouse Calendaring Department on the fourth floor of the main courthouse. There they will give you the date where the judge can get rid of the warrant. Alternatively, you could get a private attorney to help you with this step. Once you get your paperwork showing that you have a future court date, carry it around with you until your date because officers can arrest you. By showing that you are taking the steps necessary to rid yourself of that warrant, it will help you persuade the officer not to take you into jail. With a misdemeanor theft case it is unlikely that they arrest you, because the jail is so full, but they do have that power.

    Our other comment, from Elliot, is correct. To expand, there is a presumption that the court took too long to prosecute you if more than a year passes between the affidavit in support of an arrest warrant and the arraignment in court on misdemeanor matters. However, there are exceptions to this rule and it may not apply in your case.