Petty Theft Issues – Juvenile

Someone just asked me whether he has been convicted of a crime if he was cited for petty theft as a juvenile but then received a letter saying that no court appearance would be necessary and no further action would be taken. He was concerned because a college application asked whether he had been convicted of any crime, felony or misdemeanor.

This brings up several issues. For a juvenile case there is technically not a criminal conviction only a finding by the court. That finding in a misdemeanor can almost always be sealed upon the juvenile turning 18.

In the specific case mentioned above, it is unlikely that there is any record, criminal, juvenile, or otherwise and if asked about it on a college or work application the correct answer would be: “No.” (I’ve never been convicted of a crime.)

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