Civil Penalties for a Criminal Offense

On a regular basis I will have a client contact me after he or she has been charged with a theft offense that they just received a letter in the mail from the store’s lawyers. Whether it’s Wal-Mart, Target, Home Depot, or others, it’s not uncommon for their lawyers to send a theft penalty letter to the accused, demanding that they pay a civil fine to the store for their alleged acts. This is something outside of, and in addition to, any criminal fines or orders of restitution; even if the items are recovered in perfect condition!

I recently came across an article discussing just this topic and how some people are even being detained and accused of theft offenses by store personnel; not the police. And what’s worse, in some instances these allegations are being made based on racial profiling.

If you or a loved one has been accused of a theft offense this holiday season, contact Attorney Robert Botnick to discuss your rights and how to address these penalty demand letters.

Protect Yourself from a Protection Order

This past week I found myself defending a client in Lorain County against a civil stalking protection petition filed by his former girlfriend. He was truly confused and distraught over why she had taken this course of action, why he had to get dragged into court, and why he needed to hire a lawyer.

When facing a stalking protection order or temporary protection order (a “TPO”) it means facing the challenges of uprooting your life for up to five years: having to leave a place if the “protected” person is there, having to drive a different way to work because you can’t be within 500 feet of the person or her home, and maybe not being able to spend time with friends or loved ones because they are “protected” under the order. And then there’s always the threat that the protected person could come around you, forcing you to change your plans or your life, lest you face criminal charges for violating the order.

It’s a lot to deal with and when a TPO isn’t even necessary it can really mess you up and your life. In court we were able to expose my client’s ex for what she was truly seeking: to give him a hard time. The court saw through this and dismissed her petition!

There’s no need to having to just go with the flow: fight it! And let me fight for you and your rights.