Given your youth and lack of prior criminal history, an attorney should be able to reduce your charge or eliminate it outright. I do not recommend attempting to plea bargain with the prosecutor without an attorney.
Call an attorney, whether this firm or another firm, if you are overly concerned and wish to speak to a professional about your upcoming court appearance.
As the other attorney suggested, do not talk to the prosecutor without an attorney. Because it is a first offense and Petit Larceny, you will likely be offered an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal ("ACD") which means you don't have to make an admission, and the case is adjourned for 6 months. If you are not re-arrested for any crime during those 6 months, the case is dismissed. That is the most likely outcome. However, you should understand that Petit Larceny is a class A misdemeanor and carries with it a maximum penalty of 1 year in jail. If you can not afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you at arraignment, if you qualify for one.
The answering of this question does not create an attorney-client relationship.
Given your age, the best option to protect your future is to hire a criminal defense lawyer.
I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense and personal injury/civil rights cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me at (212) 577-9797 or via email at Eric@RothsteinLawNY.com. I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. The above answer is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.
Show up in court with an experienced criminal defense lawyer who will know what to do to keep your record clean so your future educational and employment options are not impacted by this incident.
An attorney can help to have this charge reduced to at worst a non-criminal violation or even potentially have it dismissed.
Hire a good local attorney.
Joseph A. Lo Piccolo, Esq.
Immediate Past President, Criminal Courts Bar Association 11'-12'
Hession Bekoff & Lo Piccolo
1103 Stewart Ave, Suite 200
Garden City, NY 11530
516-408-3666 (o) / 516-408-3833 (f)
I am a criminal defense attorney practicing in Nassau, Suffolk and New York City. The above information is not a substitution for a meeting whereas all potential legal issues can be discussed.
An experienced Westchester Criminal Defense Lawyer will not only try to obtain a dismissal on your behalf but also be able to advise you on how to handle the civil recovery demand you may be receiving from the store's attorneys.