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How Even Small Crimes can Cost You 25 Years in Prison

shoplifting-2_180x120-150x103Habitual offenders often receive much harsher sentences in the court of law. Even a petty crime can lead to extremely severe consequences if the offender is a repeat offender. An article in today’s WPTV News explores this idea.

The article is as follows:

NAPLES, Fla. – NAPLES, Fla. (AP) — Pawning a stolen laptop brought Terrick Maurice Crosby an easy $150 in September 2009. On Thursday, Collier County Circuit Judge Frank Baker gave the 34-year-old something else — a 25-year prison sentence.

Crosby faced up to 30 years under the state’s habitual offender law. His rap sheet dates back to 1994 in Miami-Dade County and includes robbery, grand theft, burglary and resisting arrest with violence charges. He was released from prison in 2006 after serving time for violation of probation.

Under state law, someone convicted of two or more felonies qualifies as a habitual offender. Authorities say Crosby stole a laptop from the Hodges University library in September 2009. He pawned the laptop the day it was stolen and later represented himself during a trail.

Criminal Defense

Crosby’s biggest mistake during his trial was representing himself. Because he had a history of robbery, grand theft, burglary and other crimes, he needed a criminal defense lawyer. A criminal defense lawyer could have spoken with the prosecuting attorney, enrolled the defendant into developmental programs, and Crosby could have walked away with hope for a better future.

Now that he is considered a habitual defender, the small crime of stealing a $150 laptop has landed him in prison for 25 years.

Don’t let this happen to you. If you have ever been arrested or charged with a crime, it is so critical that you contact a criminal defense lawyer immediately. He or she can negotiate on your behalf and truthfully, knows the law better than you do.

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