My question involves criminal law for the state of: California
My (step)daughter is 9 years old, and has become quite a little thief. She was just stealing from us (change jar), but we recently found some shoplifted candy in her purse, and she took a dollar from my husband's wallet, in other words, her behavior is accelerating. Our ability to get her into a psychological program is 3 weeks out. So my questions are:
Should we take her to the store with the shoplifted candy? My hope is that they'll slap her on the wrist and tell her not to do it again, my fear is that they'll bring the police in, though there is a part of me that thinks that is EXACTLY what she needs (to be scared straight!)
Any advice for getting this kid to exercise some self control? She has literally been stealing since the age of 6, though the shoplifting is recent. I'm worried about her and her behavior.
We've punished her for it every time we've found out, but then a month or two later, or sometimes longer, there's a new incidence. And she isn't above lying about the behavior either (which just increases the punishment) It's the only thing that actually gets my husband yelling at her. We are NOT letting her "get away" with the behavior. (but I will admit to being afraid to take her back to the store with the candy.) I guess the question is, if she does get herself caught one of these days, because she can't seem to stop, what could happen to us as her parents, besides fines resulting from the criminal and civil charges? Fines, I might add, we CANNOT afford to pay. We have four other children, 3 of whom are ours, one of whom is his. Is there a possibility that CPS could get involved and take those children away from us? It SOUNDS far-fetched to me, especially considering that I am trying to get her psychological help, but is there a possibility?