Larceny over $250 carries a potential penalty of imprisonment in the state prison for not more than five years, or by a fine of not more than twenty-five thousand dollars and imprisonment in jail for not more than two years; credit card fraud carries a potential penalty of a fine of not more than five hundred dollars or by imprisonment in a jail or house of correction for not more than one year or both. If you are not indicted and the matter stays in district court, the maximum jail sentence is 2 years and 1 year, respectively.
Since you have no record, you probably will not be indicted and your chances of receiving jail time are very small. The most likely outcome if you tender a plea will be a continuation without a finding (CWOF) with probation. If placed on probation, there will be probation fees of between $50-$65 per month, and perhaps conditions of probation such as staying away from the victim or the store at which you used the credit card.and restitution to the victim.
That being said, you should have a lawyer represent you and I advise against trying to handle this by yourself. There may be defenses available in your situation that your lawyer can spot, and/or the lawyer will help you protect your interests and get the best deal possible if you decide to tender a plea. My office offers free initial consultations and I would he happy to speak to you about your case.
Best of luck ,
Assuming the case can be proven?
The facts of the crime come to play. You need to trust your attorney. If you cannot, then get your own.
Under some circumstances, the case could be even dismissed. It depends on facts that you have not described.
It is hard to say what the sentence is without knowing more about you and the facts of the case. But generally if you have no record and its your first offense you are not looking at jail time, but at the worst case scenario probation. you may be able to get the case dismissed in certain circumstances as well.
With no previos re rod the stakes are a lot higher for you than you may realize. With a record for larceny, you may have a very difficult time getting employment after all that hard work getting a good education. You have 1 chance to get this right. Do not take it lightly. If you were my son I would advise you no differently, hire the best Criminal Defense lawyer that you can afford. My goal when defending people like yourself, young college students without a record, is to keep that record as close to pristine as possible. Ask your parents for help if necessary. I am sure they would prefer that you did if they had the choice. If you aren't too far fro. Worcester and would like to speak with me about this, call. There is no charge for a consultation. Don't ruin your future if yup can avoid it, which I am fairly sure I can.
If you are an adult (in Massachusetts that means 17 years old or older) there will be no reason for you to tell your parents. Only if you were charged in Juvenile court would the court demand to have your parents present for any part of the proceedings. I noticed you are hesitant to contact a lawyer because you think you would need help from your parents in order to retain one. You should definitely be represented when facing these kind of charges because the outcome could have a serious effect on your ability to obtain employment going forward after college. Retaining a lawyer may not be as prohibitively expensive as you think, and because you are charged with a felony you should definitely investigate your options before going in to court and facing these charges on your own. A lawyer may be able to work out a deal where these charges get dismissed in a fashion that doesn't tarnish your criminal record. Hopefully your situation turns out to be easily resolved, and I wish you the best of luck.