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Petit Larceny Charges in New York 

If you or someone you know has been accused of petit larceny in New York City, including Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan, or Bronx, or Nassau or Westchester Counties, then you probably have quite a few questions.  This website is all about Petit Larceny and only about Petit Larceny, Section 155.25 of the New York Penal Code.  The content in this petit larceny website has been written and developed by criminal defense lawyer Don Murray, founding partner at the New York City Criminal Defense Law Firm Shalley and Murray (718-268-2171).

Charged with Petit Larceny on a Desk Appearance Ticket?  Read 3 Reasons to hire Shalley and Murray for your DAT

What are Defenses to Petit Larceny?

The DEFENSES page discusses some of the most common types of defenses to petit larceny charges in New York and some of the most common misconceptions about petit larceny defense.  You may find yourself surprised by what you read.  Read more.

What is Going to Happen to Me?

The OUTCOMES page discusses some of the most common outcomes of petit larceny charges.  This page is more than simply an explanation of the maximum possible penalties.  Instead, the outcomes page will review the realistic outcomes one can expect in the real world.  Of course there will be different answers for a variety of situations, and the outcome of any particular case can never be absolutely predicted, but the OUTCOMES page will provide a pretty good idea of what most people can expect.  Read more.

I Got This Letter Saying I Owe Money.

The CIVIL PENALTY page discusses the New York State law that allows merchants to sue people they accuse of shoplifting in Civil Court for a maximum of $500.  Despite some fine and not so fine print, people occasionally believe that this demand for payment is somehow connected to the criminal case and that they are obligated to pay it.  Wrong!  Too small to be worth it on an individual basis, these actions are brought by lawfirms that are acting as collection agencies for vast numbers of these "lawsuits".  The CIVIL PENALTY page discusses your options with respect to these annoying letters.  Read more.

Petit Larceny and Immigration?

The IMMIGRATION page discusses some of the issues raised when a person who is not a citizen of the United States is accused of petit larceny.  Despite the seemingly minor nature of petit larceny, a conviction for the charge could create substantial problems, and in some cases lead to removal proceedings.  More often than not, however, satisfactory settlements of petit charges can be reached that will avoid significant immigration issues.  But there are some subtle issues that come into play.  For example, one of our favorite resolutions of petit larceny in New York is the Adjournment in Contemplation of Dismissal (ACD).  For the non-citizen in the middle of the interview process, this otherwise favorable result, could at least cause substantial delay in the proceedings while a less favorable resolution could cause no delay at all.  Read more.

Won't Legal Aid Represent Me?

The LEGAL AID page discusses the role of the Legal Aid Society and other indigent defense providers in petit larceny cases (especially in the context of desk appearance tickets).  The Legal Aid Society only represents people who are indigent.  If you work or own property, the odds are that The Legal Aid Society will not represent you and the Court will not allow The Legal Aid Society to represent you for a petit larceny case.  The LEGAL AID page will review the guidelines that the Legal Aid Society follows to decide whether a person qualifies as indigent.  It is the business of the The Legal Aid Society to provide legal services for those who are indigent.  It is not the business of the The Legal Aid Society to provide legal services for those who are not indigent, but would rather not hire a lawyer.  Read more.