When you are charged with petty theft or shoplifting, you have to be careful with the representation you choose. This is the type of crime that can have a severe negative impact on your employment and, if you are not a U.S. Citizen, on your immigration status. That’s why it is important you contact an experienced Miami petty theft attorney such as Antonio Jimenez to defend your case.
What exactly is petty theft?
Petit (petty) theft is a misdemeanor crime in the State of Florida. It can be either a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail or a second-degree misdemeanor punishable by up 60 days in jail. The difference between the two degrees is in the value of the property that is alleged to have been stolen.
If the value of the property is more than $100 (but less than $300), the crime will be considered first-degree. If the value is less than $100, it will be classified as a second-degree misdemeanor. An excellent Miami shoplifting lawyer will investigate the proper value of the property.
The usual cases of petty theft are shoplifting cases. Attorney Antonio Jimenez has defended hundreds of clients in Miami-Dade County with a high rate of dismissals. He will negotiate on your behalf with the loss prevention officers, the police officer involved and the prosecutor to ensure you get the best outcome possible.
Shoplifting Defenses Available
The most common type of defense is that the loss prevention officer made a mistake and you did not actually intend to leave the store with the unpaid merchandise or he mistook you for someone else and they put the blame on you. Your Miami shoplifting lawyer should review any surveillance tapes, all paperwork for any errors, if the loss prevention officer receives a bonus for making an apprehension and if this bonus influenced his or her decision to make a case out of nothing. These are the typical defenses but every case is unique. If you have a good lawyer, then these avenues will be explored for your defense.
Additionally, cases that involve shoplifting carry a civil lien of $200. This just means that the store will contact you, through their attorney, to collect this fee. Mr. Jimenez always advises his clients to not pay this fee upfront and to allow him the opportunity to contact the law firm on your behalf and reach a resolution. Many times the clients end up not having to pay this civil lien. He handles this part as a courtesy to his clients and does not charge a separate fee.
Expunging Your Case
At the end of your case, Mr. Jimenez will expunge or seal your case if you are eligible. This is also done as a courtesy to all his clients as long as they are eligible for the expungement. The only additional cost is the actual expenses for the expungement.
Attorney Antonio Jimenez is an experienced criminal defense attorney who has defended hundreds of clients charged with petty theft and shoplifting in Miami-Dade County, Florida. As a former prosecutor, he has the experience and the dedication to resolve your case. If you have been charged with petit theft in Miami, Florida, or are being investigated, please contact attorney Antonio Jimenez today for a free phone consultation.