Not stated here who your source of advice that "the odds are against her" may be, but it's obvious that it didn't come from a qualified criminal defense attorney in your area. You are apparently concerned with a Retail Theft incident and it also appears that a civil demand for money (probably from an attorney or law firm) has been received as well as a citation for the offense or a criminal summons from a magistrate-level court evidencing the filing of a criminal charge for Retail Theft. Pay close attention (read everything) if it is from a court or was issued by a law enforcement. Ignore efforts by attorneys, law firms, or the store itself to pay money. Best advice I can give you and her is to consult with a qualified criminal defense attorney without delay. Responding to the court system involves strict time limitations.
Lots of good advice from my colleagues here, the best of which is to seek representation from a criminal defense attorney at once, best of luck.
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