My question involves criminal law for the state of: Georgia
I was caught shoplifting at Wal-Mart. As I was about to leave the store I was approached by the Loss Prevention and they took me to a room. I cooperated with them fully I took the items out of my purse that I was planning on stealing, which totaled to a value of about $35.They also had my on video. They took my information like my drivers licence, SSN etc. and my picture was taken. The police then arrived, but because I pleaded with them they didn't take me to jail. Instead the officer wrote me ticket and told me I would get a letter in the mail telling me when my court date would be. He also explained to me that since I was fingerprinted or anything this would not be on my record, Is this true?
My other questions are:
What should I expect when I go to court?
Should I plea guilty, not guilty, nolo?
What kind of punishment should I expect?
Do I need to get a lawyer or public defender?
BTW, I have had no prior convictions what so ever.
Thanks ahead of time to any one willing to give advice.