Can a store drop charge for retail theft?
4 attorney answers
It is possible but unlikely.
Once the offense has been reported to the police the charges may be out of the complaining witness' hands, and if a warrant has been issued then it's gone even further and is now controlled by the Office of the State Attorney.
An additional risk that you will be running is that in going back and discussing the matter with the manager you will be making statements which could be considered admissions and be introduced against you in your criminal case.
At this point (with an outstanding warrant) I would advise you to a) lawyer up b) surrender and c) stay away from the store and the manager.
The bottom line with warrants is that they suck (well that and that oftentimes they end up in untimely and inconvenient incarceration). When it comes to the subject of warrants, anyone anywhere who has knowledge of the existence of the warrant has 2 choices: Either they can deal with it proactively, in an offensive manner or they can live day to day, waiting until it is ultimately served, and then play catch-up (defense).
In this light warrants can be likened to cancer. If it exists (whether it is a warrant or cancer) then you have a problem. You can either choose to deal with the problem and hope for the best or you can wait for the problem to deal with you in its own natural fashion. In the former event it may or may not work out favorably for you, but, in the case of a warrant, at least the State and the Judge will have to acknowledge that you voluntarily chose to bring the matter to them (which is an undeniable fact that even an inexperienced lawyer should be able to use your advantage during the pendency of your case). In the later event, however, just as with cancer, the longer that you choose to wait (whether in denial, self-pity or simply because you are lost in hope, desperation and prayer that it'll heal itself / go away) then more time that it has to metasticize and destroy you from within.
You may well have defenses to your charges, I don't know. What I do know is that you should discuss the matter with an experienced 813 area criminal defense lawyer. Further, I am certain that, right, wrong or indifferent that the warrant is a veritable cancer which will almost surely prejudice you, whether with the Court, the State or both, sometime down the legal pike.
I hope that I have been helpful in answering your question.
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In my experience with Walmart in Hillsborough County, they always prosecute. Do not talk to the manager. Deal with the warrant as discussed above and proceed accordingly. Good luck.
I agree with my colleagues. Since a warrant has been issued, that means that the State Attorney's Office is already involved in the prosecution. The State Attorney's Office determines whether or not to drop charges or prosecute a defendant - not a "victim" in a case. Therefore, even IF you went to the store and paid them for the items, that does not guarantee that the State Attorney's Office will drop your charges. In the eyes of the law, even if you pay for the items now, you still took the items and can be prosecuted for it. Further, anything you say to the store can be used against you in prosecution of the charge. You may also have been trespassed from that store, so going there could cause you more issues - such as another criminal charge for violating the no trespass order.
I advise you to seek an attorney and get representation in this matter, and, once you have an attorney, you can discuss with the attorney how to handle the outstanding warrant. Talk to an attorney in their office where you have confidentiality.
I have attempted to provide you with an accurate and thorough answer to your question. Please understand that this answer is intended to provide you with general information. It should not be construed as legal advice, nor does it form an attorney/client relationship based on this communication. Good Luck!
I agree with Mr. Haber, at this point, it is in the hands of the State Attorney's Office and going back to speak with the manager could end up getting you into more trouble, such as violation of a trespass warning.
At this point, you need to think about getting an attorney to represent you on this matter.