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Daughter been charged with Theft breached of trust, any ideas on likely outcome please?

(129 Posts)
charliebird1979 Mon 15-Apr-13 22:26:21

Ok this is really hard for me but here goes.

My daughter has been charged with theft breach of trust. She is a single mum currently seriously struggling financially. She is living with her 2 year old son in temporary housing and was facing homelessness. I'm not saying that this is an excuse, i'm just trying to give you all the facts.

She stole £800 in cash and around a £1000 worth of jewellery from her grandmother (my mother). She took the jewellery because she knew that her grandmother would be able to claim it on the insurance. She used the money to pay off housing debt in order to keep a roof over her and her son's head.

She had previously gone to her grandmother and begged her for help but her grandmother refused despite being extremely well off. My daughter then tried to obtain loans before she took the money and jewellery out of desperation.

I have begged my mother to drop the charges but she is refusing to and my daughter is now terrified of what sentences she might face and whether she will lose her little boy.

My daughter has no previous convictions at all, infact she has been the victim of serious crime. She works with disabled children for a living and this recent incident was completely out of character and done out of sheer desperation.

I am so torn out of love for her and my mother. Whilst my daughter did something terribly wrong, I also blame my mother for not helping her. I can understand why my daughter did what she did because I believe most of us would do anything to keep a roof over our children's heads.

Does anyone know how long she is likely to go to prison for? Will she lose her child?

Thank you in advance

LaurieFairyCake Mon 15-Apr-13 22:29:37

It's not that serious, she's really unlikely to get jail time.

I also think you're mother could have helped her but why us she in such a terrible position of being homeless? Has she other issues?

Have you not been in a position to help her?

CajaDeLaMemoria Mon 15-Apr-13 22:32:58

From a legal point of view, if this is her first conviction, she'll probably get sentenced to community service. It'll probably be a substantial amount of hours for that amount of money.

She may also find that her employer ends her employment, depending on her specific job, as she is no longer trustworthy.

HappyJustToBe Mon 15-Apr-13 22:33:17

You can search for the Magistrates Court Sentencing Guidelines for an idea of sentence.

AgentProvocateur Mon 15-Apr-13 22:36:53

She'll probably lose her job, and will be unlikely to get another one that required a CRB check. If she was working, why was she so desperate for money - is there more to this? Depending on how old/vulnerable her gran is, I wouldn't be so sure that she won't get a jail sentence.

If she does, can the child's father or you step in to provide care? I think it would be wise to have a plan for the worst-case scenario

ReallyTired Mon 15-Apr-13 22:43:59

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

charliebird1979 Mon 15-Apr-13 22:49:15

She ran away from her abusive partner and came to live with me whilst waiting for a council house. Paid me rent and everything, she's a good girl.

But basically having her and her son in my tiny 2 bed house got too much for me and I had to ask her to move out.

She's struggling financially because a) she was helping me with rent so had nothing saved b) gets no support from her son's dad c) works part time. She also had no experience of living on her own and just got into a mess with the bills basically. 3 months down the line and she owes rent, child care and council tax. Poor girl panicked and got pay day loans which just made the debt worse, then she was signed off for 4 weeks with stress and lost a months pay as a result. She only found out last week that she could have claimed housing benefit for that month whilst she wasn't paid at work.

I was upset that no one from the lodge where she is staying say her down and explained all her bills etc.

idiot55 Mon 15-Apr-13 22:52:11

gosh Really, I cant quite believe your views can be genuine, how awful.

PLease charlie ignore that the previous comments, no help at all.

Just want to say what a difficult sitation, I think you just have to keep out of it as best you can and support your daughter.

Im sure she wont loose her child , or go to prision.

charliebird1979 Mon 15-Apr-13 22:53:20

Reallytired Can I just say that my daughter is not a low life! She works with disabled children actually and is exceedingly good at her job. Her ex partner put her in hospital twice and she is also a recovering rape victim. Those sorts of people are low lifes, not someone who took some money in order to keep a roof over her child's head.

Realise I haven't said that she has been putting money back into her grandmother's account since taking the money back in December. Yes she stole it but she was intending to pay it back.

ChompieMum Mon 15-Apr-13 22:55:36

Wow ReallyTired. I hope your name explains why your post is so harsh.

charliebird1979 Mon 15-Apr-13 22:56:16

idiot55 Thank you for your positive comments.

Just so everyone knows I couldn't support my daughter financially because I can hardly pay my own bills and that my daughter actually helped me a great deal with money whilst she was living with me and I did try to teach her right from wrong.

TerrysNo2 Mon 15-Apr-13 22:57:59

your mother is well off but won't help you, her grandchild or great-grandchild financially? that should be a crime.

charliebird1979 Mon 15-Apr-13 23:08:29

TerrysNo2 My mother said it was too much money and refused point blank to help her. She lives in a large 4 bedroom house and has no need to worry about the bills, 3 savings accounts all with 5 figure sums in. Daughter honestly thought she wouldn't notice the money go missing and that she'd be able to pay it back before anyone could realise that it had ever gone.

The jewellery was mostly old and broken and as far as I know none of it had sentimental value. There was a lot more that she could've taken but she only took the pieces that she didn't think anyone would miss again.

I personally think my mother is being overly harsh in pressing charges.

As for what will happen to her son if she goes to prison, I can't have him. His father isn't allowed near him so that just leaves her ex's parents. They have been trying to get their hands on the child ever since she broke up with his father. They told her that if they have to look after him because she has gone to prison they will make sure that she never sees him again.

She is absolutely terrified. She says she can't live without her son. She has a history of depression and I believe she will hurt herself if she goes to prison or loses her son.

ReallyTired Mon 15-Apr-13 23:11:46

"your mother is well off but won't help you, her grandchild or great-grandchild financially? that should be a crime."

I think you would find that most judges would disagree with you. Legally parental responsiblity ends at 18 years old. It may seem mean not to help out a granchild, but your mother may have had her reasons.

There comes a point when adults need to learn to fend for themselves in the big wide world rather than being constantly bailed out. We are lucky in the UK to have a benefits system for those who have fallen on hard times. There is the option of bankcrupcy if you really cannot pay debts.

This charity can help people with serious debt. Although it is run by christians there is no evangelism. They just want to improve people's lives.

Bluebell99 Mon 15-Apr-13 23:14:44

Why can't you look after your grandchild?

TerrysNo2 Mon 15-Apr-13 23:15:33

really no one should grow up expecting their family to provide for them but as a parent I know that if ever my children or family needed some money to keep a roof over their head I would happily give them anything to help.

I could not understand a parent who wouldn't do this.

charliebird1979 Mon 15-Apr-13 23:16:24

Reallytired thank you for the link but its a tad too late and yes my mother may have had her reasons but she also knew that her grand daughter and great grandson were about to be kicked out on the streets. She is in temporary accommodation, if you don't pay the rent then there is literally nowhere left to go.

Thank you so much to everyone for all of your posts.

If anyone has anymore ideas on the likely sentence then please let me know. All the guidelines I have looked at seem to be incredibly vague.

charliebird1979 Mon 15-Apr-13 23:18:33

bluebell I work full time and have my own bills to pay. Plus I don't have the energy to care for a toddler. Also have terrible arthritis in my hands which makes carry, lifting, changing difficult. I can't even put up his buggy.

charliebird1979 Mon 15-Apr-13 23:19:30

Terrys Thank you again.

Feel I should point out the my daughter had never once asked any member of the family for help before now.

ShootingStarsss Mon 15-Apr-13 23:22:41

I don't know anything about what will happen for the crime but she won't go to prison for this.

I don't understand that if you as her mother are that worried why can't your daughter & grandson stay with you until she gets back on her feet?

Obviously you don't have to have her but surly if it ment she was going to be on the streets & you live in a 2 bedroom house could you not have helped her short term?

ShootingStarsss Mon 15-Apr-13 23:23:37

Does she still have the jewellery to return to her grandmother?

quietlysuggests Mon 15-Apr-13 23:23:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

colditz Mon 15-Apr-13 23:24:46

Actually .... She asked you for help, and you decided it was "all too much" and threw her out. Never mind the lodge explaining her bills, where were you? Where were you when she was getting stupid loans she couldn't pay back? Where were you when she didn't understand about her money?

There is room in your two bedroom house for her and her child, no wonder she was desperate and frightened, you made her that way when you made her homeless.

iloveshortshorts Mon 15-Apr-13 23:24:50

Hi charlie

I know someone who was charged with a similar crime and as it was her first offence she got 80 hours community work and also fined £500.

I hope your daughter can keep her job as it does sound as if she was really desperate and out of character. x

ReallyTired Mon 15-Apr-13 23:30:15

"I personally think my mother is being overly harsh in pressing charges."

Sometimes victims do not get the choice whether charges are pressed or not. It maybe someone else other than your mother pressing the charges. Has there been involvement of adult social services with the care of your mother?

If your mother made an insurance claim for the jewelery then the insurance company would expect the crime to be reported the police and dealt with.

It is not always possible to retract charges or indeed stop the police from prosecuting a crime even if the person has all their mental facilties.

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