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Old 03-27-2016, 02:08 PM   #21
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He pled guilty to the misdemeanor theft since all witnesses were available and so there was no point going through a trial. He paid a fine, I forget how much but it wasn't horrendous and that was the end of it.

BTW, in MD where I worked that wouldn't happen with a video rental. Those are civil cases and I suppose the video store could send it to collections but it would never become a criminal case where any warrants would be issued.
So, there was no extra "slap on the wrist" for the "failing to appear" part of the deal? He did skip out on a court date by fleeing to another state and had to be arrested upon his return. It just seems like that would be the bigger issue.

Maybe there was some plea bargaining. A guilty plea (and no trial) in exchange for no repercussions for skipping the original court date and fleeing.

Sounds like an episode of a future soap opera!
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Old 03-27-2016, 02:38 PM   #22
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Maybe there was some plea bargaining. A guilty plea (and no trial) in exchange for no repercussions for skipping the original court date and fleeing.
That's usually the case in plea bargaining - "save the state the trouble and expense of a trial and you'll get off easier". Bearing in mind this was nearly two decades ago, I think the case was more like "young man did something stupid, now knows it, he's grown up, no point in wasting the state's resources on him being vengeful". No one was much interested in nailing the guy to the wall for something he'd done over 12 years ago and been clean since then.
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Old 03-27-2016, 02:49 PM   #23
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No one was much interested in nailing the guy to the wall for something he'd done over 12 years ago and been clean since then.
Actually, he hadn't been clean for over 12 years. He had skipped a court date and fled the state to avoid prosecution and continued in that status until recently arrested. But, I understand the prosecutor's position. Why tie up the system over some bad decisions (shop lifting followed by fleeing prosecution) that are relatively mild by comparison to the typical criminal.

Anyway, thanks for the info Walt. I thought blowing off a court date and fleeing was a bigger deal than it apparently is so this has been educational.
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