What if Dianne’s car is impounded and inventoried, and they discover stolen electronic equipment in the car’s trunk…do you charge her with anything new?Why or why not?

Read the following scenario and for maximum points, identify ALL POSSIBLE crimes Luis may be committing.


(A) Analyze each potential crime by applying the elements learned from the text, and then

(B) answer the questions that follow. Please number your responses so that they correspond to the question posed.

There is no word count requi rement for this assignment; just be sure to answer all questions fully.  For detailed information on grading criteria, please refer to the grading rubric.  Note the following rubric:

  • If your assignment rates unacceptable in any category, you will not receive a passing grade on this assignment.
  • If your assignment rates effort but unacceptable in any category, you will not receive a grade higher than C.
  • Your instructor has the right to adjust your grade to a grade higher or lower than the rubric total.

Scenario :


Dianne is a young woman with a spending problem. She has three credit cards that are maxed out, she is behind in her rent, and her landlord is threatening to evict her. Fortunately, she has been paying her payments on her leased laptop computer, but next month is not looking good. Dianne works as a cashier forWalmart. She has worked there for the past five years and has learned a way to make some extra cash. On occasion, when the time is right, Dianne pockets the cash given by a customer and does not register the transaction.

Today is her birthday, and with the extra cash, Dianne takes a fellow co-worker out for dinner.  At the end of their dinner, Dianne and her co-worker skip out, not leaving funds to cover the bill.  She justifies it to herself, “well, the food and service wasn’t that good anyway”.  Board as ever, she contacts her cousin, who works at the nearby “IMAX” theater.  She wants to see the latest Star Wars movie, but not wanting to spend any money, she gets her cousin to give her two movie stubs and they use them to gain admission.

At the end of the movie, Dianne and her co-worker exit the theater to find that Dianne’s laptop is missing from her car. The night just keeps getting better and better. It must have been stolen. They call the police and the police fill out a report. She drives back to her apartment, and when she arrives, she finds a notice of eviction posted to her door. Getting desperate, she asks her co-worker for a loan of $500. Her co-worker writes out a personal check and says “you better pay me back this time”. Dianne smiles and replies, “of course, you know I’m good for it”. Her co-worker laughs and waves goodbye.

Dianne then takes her co-worker’s check and adds a one in front of the five and fifteen over the word five. She then hands the check to her landlord telling him, “you can’t kick me out man; I’ve got nowhere to go. Here’s the back rent, I’ll get back on track…I promise.” The landlord agrees to let her stay, but threatens to evict her if she’s late again.

Dianne has a restless night’s sleep because she’s worried about the laptop. The following morning she gets a call from Computer Depot, that leases her laptop and they inform her that they have repossessed it because they were informed that she was unreliable for payment. Dianne is infuriated. She gave Computer Depot all her money for down payment, instead of buying groceries that week. That same night, after hours, she goes to Computer Depot and tries to get her laptop back, but unfortunately for her, Computer Depot has hired a security guard to patrol the property. The guard catches her red handed, climbing out a window with the computer, so he calls the police. The 911 dispatch alerts you (the police officer), and, as the officer in the vicinity, you go to Computer Depot and handle the call.


Questions :

  1. When you arrive, do you arrest Dianne for her actions at Computer Depot? Why or why not? If you do arrest her, what do you charge her with?
  2. Assuming there is evidence to support all the facts as you read them in the above paragraph, what if any of the following charges could you potentially charge her with? (Petit Larceny, Grand Larceny, Larceny by Trick, Shoplifting, Receiving Stolen Property, Unauthorized use, Theft of services, Embezzlement, False pretenses, Forgery, & Uttering.) Do you need additional information?
  3. For each charge, cite the facts that support the elements as you learned them in your textbook.
  4. Would the charges be different if you learned that Dianne was an Iraqi war veteran who lost her arm and suffers from post traumatic stress disorder? Why or why not?
  5. What if Dianne’s car is impounded and inventoried, and they discover stolen electronic equipment in the car’s trunk…do you charge her with anything new?Why or why not?
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