My question involves criminal law for the state of: Texas
Recently my girlfriend foolishly stole make up from wal-mart. Please I am already extremely angry by this and yes I know how stupid she is, so no need to tell me what I already know . She recently received a letter in the mail form wal-marts attorneys stating that they are going to pursue a civil case on top of the legal case she has pending. They, pretty much in thug terms, said pay us $200 or we will sue you for theft, attorney fees, and court cost. She is freaking out and I do not know what to do. Let me explain what happened.
She went to wal-mart. Put some makeup in her purse. Before she was even going to go check out she was grabbed by security, and her purse was taken from her. She was led to the back and put in a room. She waited for 3 hours until the police finally arrived just to harass her, stating that he wanted to "strip search her just to make sure", then proceeded to high five the "wal-mart goon". She was ticketed for theft and went to court today, where she foolishly tried to plead guilty and asked for deferred judification. They said they would grant her deferred if she paid $400 to the courts. She did not have that kind of money, and thankfully the judge did not take the guilty plea and scheduled her to return to court in one month. She has received a letter from wal-marts attorneys stating that they are suing her for theft AND damages.
Yes she is stupid. Yes she attempted to steal but did not steal. She did not damage any product that she attempted to steal. IS wal-mart actually going to sue her? Can they legally sue her even if she did not leave with the item or damage it in any way? Has anyone heard of this happening before? What is the best way to handle this situation? Hiring a lawyer is out of the question she does not have enough money, and I believe she is not entitled to a free public defender for a class C misdemeanor. Any advice would be helpful, thank you.