My question involves criminal law for the state of: Florida
I was detained by the loss prevention department in Walmart in Miami a few days ago. The police gave me a citation with a Promise to Appear in court and said I would be receiving a notice in the mail. Also, the loss prevention department made a mistake in the total and listed one item twice so the total on the citation was $32.80 when the actual value was $24. I contacted them about it and the woman in LP said the price does not matter but admitted to listing one item twice and said she would make the change before I went to court.
I've been doing some research and I have a few questions:
1. What should I plead when I go to court and do I need a lawyer to be present with me the fist time?
2. With regards to diversion, how would I go about asking for it?
3. If I am granted pre-trial diversion, what will show on my record? Is it automatically removed after the 6 months or so or would I still need to file papers to have the record removed.
My stats: I am 22 years old, a master's student with a clean record (not even a parking/speeding ticket). I can't even explain what made me do it and I've been so torn up about it that I haven't eaten or slept in the past few days. My biggest concern is having this be on my record because I graduate in a few months and I'll be applying for jobs. I understand that it would be best to consult a lawyer but I do not have the funds to get one. I plan on searching for some free consultations but I would just like a bit of advice beforehand. If anyone has been in a similar situation I'd like to hear from you too.
Any help you could provide would be greatly appreciated.