(This is King County, WA state)
The court has sent a letter offering pre-trial diversion. I am to contact a probation officer to find out if I qualify, and if so, I'd be able to skip the court experience, the case will be dismissed on the conditions of the diversion program (probation, counselling, community service, etc).
ALSO, The shop has agreed to civil compromise. According to the loss prevention officer, I will need to pay restitution and sign a trespass order, write them a letter requesting civil compromise (or get a legal form that lawyers have access to) which they will present to the prosecutor. Assuming the prosecutor agrees (since it is my first offense, the LP thinks it should not be a problem), the shop will send me a letter. This letter I will take to the court date to present to the court, and the shop will say they agree and case dismissed?
The LP said the difference between the two is that with civil compromise the case is closed right away, with diversion, it is closed after the probation period.
The probation office said they didn't know anything about civil compromise.
1. I assume both options will show the same on my record -- an arrest but no conviction? Is this correct?
2. What do I do with the offer for diversion?
3. Can the judge still nail me to a board when the shop agrees to civil compromise? Is it still less risk to take the diversion?