Can petty theft with prior be a misdemeanor is prior theft occurred over 5 years ago?

UPDATED: May 28, 2009

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Can petty theft with prior be a misdemeanor is prior theft occurred over 5 years ago?

In April, I was cited out for petty theft. The police offic. did not fine any priors on my record. When I had my arraignment, the prior petty theft was listed on the complaint. However, the date specified for the prior was way off, by about a year or more. Is there a way this can be dropped to a misdemeanor? I am a stay at home mom and cannot have jail time. I am very regretful of my actions.

Asked on May 28, 2009 under Criminal Law, California


Robert Pellinen / Law Offices of Robert Pellinen

Answered 13 years ago | Contributor

I'm assuming the district attorney charged you with a felony also known as a "petty (theft) with a prior." But because you're charged with a felony now, that doesn't mean you can't get the charge reduced to a misdemeanor.  The offense is called a "wobbler" which means the crime can be charged as a felony or misdemeanor.  Since you have no prior records I don't think you'll be charged with a felony or do any jail time, especially since you have demonstrated responsibility and are truly repentant.

Meanwhile, don't discuss this case with anybody except an attorney.   



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