Caught stealing $10 concealer first offence

I was caught stealing in Ontario and wasn't approached until I had left shoppers drug mart. I returned the item to loss preventions and was questioned. Take into account that I'm of legal age and have a clear record. I lied and gave false information claiming I was 18, gave a fake address and claimed & called my friend was my mom since I was considered "under the age" and needed to be picked up. I also said I had no ID when I had a passport in my wallet which was found when searched. Had police handcuff me inside the store and escort me to their vehicle. Officers gave me an appearance notice & I received no fine. I was given a date to get fingerprinted and go to court. Whats the worse/best case scenario? Whats should be said during the hearing from my end? Whats the likelihood of me being charged with theft? What are some tips regarding how to compose myself in trial for first time offenders? I'm really nervous & don't know much about how these things work.

Asked 12 months ago in Ontario
Categories: Criminal Law

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Andrew Captan

Answer by Andrew Captan

Not VerifiedOntario lawyer

Sorry to hear about this Theft Under $5,000 charge.

You may be offered a chance to participate in the Diversion (Direct Accountability) program, through which you can deal with the charge outside the traditional criminal court process.  The program usually involves completion of community service, a letter of apology and/or making a charitable donation.  If the Crown Attorney offers you a chance to participate, and you do participate (and complete the program requirements), the charge will usually be withdrawn or stayed, leaving you without any finding of guilt or criminal conviction.

The first court date is not a trial. You are not going to be saying anything at all about the case in court. It is an administrative appearance, where you will find out whether you qualify for the program mentioned above.


Andrew Captan
Toronto Criminal Lawyer | 

Posted 11 months ago

Please note that this is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice to you. Legal advice pertaining to your particular situation can only be provided by a lawyer who has met with you to obtain all pertinent background information necessary to give you a formal legal opinion. For formal legal advice, hire a lawyer (many give a free first consultation). Contact Andrew Captan, or search the Lawyer Directory.

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