I stole $500 and i feel absolutely terrible about it. i had done it because i was in a financial rut. this is the first time i’ve ever committed any crime and i’m so scared i’ll be facing jail time. i’ve been researching nonstop and i’m so afraid. any help is appreciated. thank you.
I am sorry you were so desperate that you decided to steal. You can’t change what you’ve done. It’s time to think about making amends (and avoiding prosecution at the same time)! A better answer to your question requires more information from you. However, there are some general conclusions. It is critical you gather the funds necessary to repay the theft. If you can make restitution without revealing who you are, at the very least that will lessen your shame and personal feelings of guilt. If you must identify yourself, that may result in criminal charges. Given the relatively small amount of property taken, the crime is a misdemeanor petty theft, not a felony, unless you entered the dwelling place of another in order to steal the money. Petty theft is simply taking property belonging to another. Property valued at no more than $50 can result in either a misdemeanor (PC 484) or am infraction (PC 490.1). It may be possible to convince the prosecutor to reduce a misdemeanor petty theft charge to an infraction (which is an incentive to making restitution before being caught). As an infraction, the worst sentence the judge can give is a maximum monetary fine of $250. Regardless, jail time is almost certainly not in your future; however, there may be court proceedings and some degree of supervision, probably informal or diversion out of the court system into a program. At the end of the day, even if caught, it’s quite possible you would avoid jail, a conviction, and intrusive probation. You may be helped by seeking the advice of an AVVO attorney who provides free consultations. If you think this answer is the BEST OR HELPFUL PLEASE MARK
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