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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    4

    Post Is the Prosecutor Trying to Make an Example of Me

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: California.

    I went in to a Lowes Home Improvement store and purchased a kitchen sink through the self checkout line. Within seconds of leaving the store I was surrounded by employees and loss prevention and told that I did not pay the proper price for the sink. As I returned to the store they escorted me to an office and placed handcuffs on me. When they emptied my pockets, they found 2 or 3 barcode stickers. I had planned to use one of the stickers to reduce the price of the sink. However, I didn't have to. When I went to place the sink into the cart, it already had a sticker on it so I didn't need to. The scam is that common. I sat handcuffed for 6 hours before the police came to get me. During that time, the head of loss prevention interogated me claiming I was part of a crime ring. I bailed out of jail 20 hours later.

    At my arraignment I plead not guilty to a single charge of felony commercial burglary. The value of the item stolen was $379. At that point, the prosecutor was not willing to reduce my charge to a misdemeanor. They said they would only offer to not have me serve time in state prison, and that they would leave it up to the judge as to how much time I actually serve. Since then, my lawyer has told me that he has spoken with the district attorney but has not gotten back to me regarding the outcome. I go back to court in 3 days.

    My lawyer said it's odd they haven't offered to reduce it to a misdemeanor because I don't have any priors. Do you think they are trying to make an example of me? Do you have any suggestions as to how I may convince them to reduce the charges?

    Thank You.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Is the Prosecutor Trying to Make an Example of Me

    Prosecutors get paid to prosecute, not to reduce or drop charges. If the scam is that common, and they've got a solid case against you, that sounds like the perfect reason NOT to reduce or drop charges. Yes, one of the principle purposes of convicting people and putting them in jail or prison is to serve as a deterrent to others. From what you describe, they've ALREADY made an offer of not serving time in prison. That may be the best offer you'll get short of actually taking the case to trial. Follow the direction of your attorney - they are in the best position to know your local judges and their sentencing habits.
    Catherine NeSmith
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    27,831

    Default Re: Is the Prosecutor Trying to Make an Example of Me

    DA's generally plea when they don't have a strong case and they believe they might not win with the charges they have presented. That way, they are assured of some win.

    In your situation, they have you dead to rights. The case is so tight I don't see any way out so why should he bargain? He gains nothing by bargaining and he doesn't think he has much of any chance of losing.

    they offered the no prison time so they don't have to spend the time and money on a trial. No reason to offer anything else.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    533

    Default Re: Is the Prosecutor Trying to Make an Example of Me

    Interesting...

    So someone else had placed the false barcode on the sink that you happened to pick up?

    Had you not had "2 or 3 barcodes" in your pocket, you'd have a chance.

    Surely they are making an example of you, and Lowes is surely sitting on the DA ratehr had and insisting on it. IMO.

    To the other two posters: they've offered no STATE time. Which means COUNTY time!

    If the deal was no time, the OP would likely have never posted..again IMO

    A

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    27,831

    Default Re: Is the Prosecutor Trying to Make an Example of Me

    Quote Quoting adam_
    View Post

    To the other two posters: they've offered no STATE time. Which means COUNTY time!

    If the deal was no time, the OP would likely have never posted..again IMO

    A
    what are you talking about. Nobody said anything about NO time. Aardvark and myself both specifically said PRISON time. Seeing the fact the OP stated:

    They said they would only offer to not have me serve time in state prison, and that they would leave it up to the judge as to how much time I actually serve.

    I think we both understood what was said. Prison time is state or federal time (fed doesn't apply in this situation so it would refer to state time). Jail time generally refers to county time.

    my statement stands as I posted it. They don't seem willing to deal because they already gave him an offer of no prison time if he pleads to the crime. Why should the state bargain any further? They have a very solid case. If he pleads guilty, the state doesn't have to spend the time and money on a trial yet they put the guy away for some time. IF they have to expend the time and money to try him, they will surely shoot for prison time.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    533

    Default Re: Is the Prosecutor Trying to Make an Example of Me

    Quote Quoting Apathetic_1
    View Post
    They said they would only offer to not have me serve time in state prison, and that they would leave it up to the judge as to how much time I actually serve. .
    Quote Quoting jk
    View Post

    they offered the no prison time
    My mistake I guess

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