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Shoplifting under 100 dollars at wallmart, first offense

Columbus, OH |

I was caught around 2 weeks ago shoplifting at wallmart with my friend. I was the one that got caught for the stolen items and she said at first that she didnt have to do with it but they looked at the videos and saw she helped me pick out the items. It is my first offense, my record has been completely clean up until now and I'm 18. Im waiting on letters to find out whats going to happen next but im nervous and don't understand what is going to happen because I have never gone through anything like this before. The total price of items stolen was 80 dollars. It was a really stupid mistake and it has taught me a lesson, I just want to fix things and I hope everything will work out time and I wont have to face jail time. Does anyone have an idea what I will be facing? Please let me know.

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Attorney answers 1


Normally on a first offense theft you are not looking at jail time. Especially considering your lack of record. If you are lucky, you might be eligible for the theft diversion program. The theft diversion program is a weekend program you attend where they talk about the affects of stealing and other related issues. At the end of the program they give you a certificate of completion. At least here in Franklin County, once you have your certificate and agree not to enter Walmart for two years, they will dismiss your case for court costs (usually around $100.00 or so).

The diversion program is probably the ideal outcome, assuming again you are in Franklin County. Other counties may handle your case differently. Also be warned that Walmart may send you a demand letter asking for a civil penalty - they are entitled to this under the law.

If you have any further questions or would like to discuss your situation in more detail, feel free to contact me.