Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

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miasanmia88
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Joined: Wed Aug 14, 2013 7:16 pm

Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby miasanmia88 » Thu Apr 23, 2015 3:09 am

First of all, thanks for taking the time to read this and offer advice or concerns, I do appreciate that. If this is not the right forum to post in, please correct me. The 2 addendum below are 100% truthful and I am really not hiding anything. Both addendum are regarding one single incident, but because the crime was committed on my university grounds, I need to write a secondary one regarding my suspension related to the incident.

Please note that the application asks for an addendum for each C+F question I answer "yes" to.

1.)The first question asks if I have ever been charged, arrested, or convicted of a felony or misdemeanor, including expunged or sealed records, the facts of the incident and where the court hearings were held etc... this one really asks for everything.

On December 19, 2008 I was apprehended at the xxxxx University book store due to me shoplifting text books for classes. Since the books collectively exceeded $400 in wholesale value, I was taken to the police station and had charges filed against me for felony grand theft, penal code section 487 (a). It was my first and only time shoplifting and I was caught. Since I was a first time offender and had no prior criminal history, my charges were dismissed and I was then charged with misdemeanor trespassing, penal code section 602 (k). I graciously plead Nolo Contendere to the misdemeanor trespassing charge and agreed to complete 250 hours of community service for my offense. My whole court process took place at xxxxxxx Justice Center. I successfully completed all my community service time at the (community garden/park) where I did manual work on the garden and exposition grounds.

The entire experience 8 years ago was very sobering. My actions were absolutely deplorable, reckless, myopic and out of character that day. There is absolutely no excuse for my actions. There were a million other different and lawful ways I could have raised the money to buy those books and I still regret that decision to this day and take full responsibility for my action and its consequences. I do believe the experience forced me to be a better person in terms of appreciating what I have and the sanctity of the community and the role of law.

It is my understanding that this offense can be expunged and I am now in the process of doing so.







2.)The second question asks if I have ever been subject to any conduct or disciplinary action taken by an Education Institution.

My addendum:

Since the event described in my conviction addendum took place on XXXXX campus while I was a student, I was disciplined with a suspension of one academic year after review and punishment seen fit by the (insert college disciplinary committee) for my shoplifting offense. This disciplinary suspension took place during the 2009 – 2010 academic year. I returned to xxx the following school year.
My actions were terribly out of character, reckless and resulted in a sobering experience. During the one year suspension I performed 250 hours of community service set by the court and worked a job at a restaurant as a bar back where I continued to work after resuming school the following year. The disciplinary suspension enacted on me for my actions allowed me to really reflect on my terrible decision and resulting actions. I learned that year to appreciate the education I took for granted and as a result of this experience, I focused all of my efforts the following year on my education and made the dean’s list.


--------------------
Do you think this would really put my application to my number one school at risk? The school is a strong regional where I am above the 75% LSAT and right at the Median GPA and i am a MA URM. I have strong recs: 1) my boss who is an alum at the school and 2) my legal writing professor in college where I received the top grade that semester in his class. I have been out of college for three years and have held a job at a firm that entire time.

Thanks again.

UndecidedMN
Posts: 151
Joined: Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:05 pm

Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby UndecidedMN » Thu Apr 23, 2015 3:13 am

Should be fine.

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fisheatbananas
Posts: 199
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2015 6:26 am

Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby fisheatbananas » Thu Apr 23, 2015 4:08 am

Looks fine to me too. It's straighforward and not too long

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bearsfan23
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Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby bearsfan23 » Thu Apr 23, 2015 4:17 am

I think its perfectly acceptable. I'd question whether you want to be that detailed though, since it seems like a relatively minor offense that happened pretty long ago (i.e. I'd probably leave out the penal code section, where you completed the community service, etc). No real issues with it and (since your disclosing it), I doubt it will be any issue for the bar

ticklemesilly
Posts: 411
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2015 4:53 pm

Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby ticklemesilly » Thu Apr 23, 2015 7:01 am

Double check if this will give you issues getting admitted to the bar. I doubt it will, but better safe than sorry because the application process is long and arduous and you want to be guaranteed you can practice in your state of choice.

The addendum confers to all of the guidelines I've read about writing addenda. You convinced me that you regret your actions and have changed for the better, and I tend to be quite judgemental about C&F issues. Very well written.

miasanmia88
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Aug 14, 2013 7:16 pm

Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby miasanmia88 » Thu Apr 23, 2015 6:11 pm

Thanks everyone.

@Bearsfan23, they specifically ask "If "yes", for each occurrence furnish complete facts, including the date, name and nature of the offense, the name and locality of the court, and the disposition of each such matter"

Don't you think the penal code would suffice?

side question: at the time of the offense, once you amounted to over 400$ in property stolen it went up to grand theft as opposed to petty theft. now if you look up the same exact statute, that dollar amount has risen to now be over $950 in property. Do you think I should clarify that at the time of the incident I had just surpassed 400$ and not $950??? I chose not to, but if you think it would be good to clarify please advise.

thanks

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iShotFirst
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Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby iShotFirst » Thu Apr 23, 2015 6:19 pm

Do not put "graciously" pled nolo especially since you did a more serious crime... Maybe you mean that they were gracious to offer you the plea, or 'gratefully', I hope. Graciously implies that you are doing them a favor. Schools might not care but that really sticks in my craw, maybe just because I'm a prosecutor but still.

I do agree with the poster above that you should cut out a lot of the detail especially where you plead, where you did the comm svc etc.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Apr 23, 2015 6:22 pm

iShotFirst wrote:Do not put "graciously" pled nolo especially since you did a more serious crime... Maybe you mean that they were gracious to offer you the plea, or 'gratefully', I hope. Graciously implies that you are doing them a favor. Schools might not care but that really sticks in my craw, maybe just because I'm a prosecutor but still.

I do agree with the poster above that you should cut out a lot of the detail especially where you plead, where you did the comm svc etc.

Was going to say the same thing.

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bretby
Posts: 312
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2014 5:15 pm

Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby bretby » Thu Apr 23, 2015 6:42 pm

miasanmia88 wrote:First of all, thanks for taking the time to read this and offer advice or concerns, I do appreciate that. If this is not the right forum to post in, please correct me. The 2 addendum below are 100% truthful and I am really not hiding anything. Both addendum are regarding one single incident, but because the crime was committed on my university grounds, I need to write a secondary one regarding my suspension related to the incident.

Please note that the application asks for an addendum for each C+F question I answer "yes" to.

1.)The first question asks if I have ever been charged, arrested, or convicted of a felony or misdemeanor, including expunged or sealed records, the facts of the incident and where the court hearings were held etc... this one really asks for everything.

On December 19, 2008 I was apprehended at the xxxxx University book store for shoplifting text books for classes. Since the books collectively exceeded $400 in wholesale value, I was taken to the police station and charges were filed against me for felony grand theft, penal code section 487 (a). Since I was a first time offender and had no prior criminal history, my charges were dismissed and I was then charged with misdemeanor trespassing, penal code section 602 (k). I gratefully pled Nolo Contendere to the misdemeanor trespassing charge and agreed to complete 250 hours of community service. The process took place at xxxxxxx Justice Center. I successfully completed my community service time at the (community garden/park) where I did manual work on the garden and exposition grounds.

The entire experience 8 years ago was very sobering. My actions that day were absolutely deplorable, reckless, myopic and out of character. There is absolutely no excuse for my actions. There were a million other different and lawful ways I could have raised the money to buy those books. I regret my decision to this day and take full responsibility for my action and its consequences. The experience led me to be a better person, helping me to appreciate all that I have as well as the sanctity of the community.

It is my understanding that this offense can be expunged and I am now in the process of doing so.

Couldn't figure out how to do bold, etc., so I made my suggested edits in larger font. Overall, short, sweet and to the point.






2.)The second question asks if I have ever been subject to any conduct or disciplinary action taken by an Education Institution.

My addendum:

Since the event described in my conviction addendum took place on XXXXX campus while I was a student, I was disciplined with a suspension of one academic year after review and punishment seen fit by the (insert college disciplinary committee) for my shoplifting offense. This disciplinary suspension took place during the 2009 – 2010 academic year. I returned to xxx the following school year.
My actions were terribly out of character, reckless and resulted in a sobering experience. During the one year suspension I performed 250 hours of community service set by the court and worked a job at a restaurant as a bar back where I continued to work after resuming school the following year. The disciplinary suspension enacted on me for my actions allowed me to really reflect on my terrible decision and resulting actions. I learned that year to appreciate the education I took for granted and as a result of this experience, I focused all of my efforts the following year on my education and made the dean’s list.


--------------------
Do you think this would really put my application to my number one school at risk? The school is a strong regional where I am above the 75% LSAT and right at the Median GPA and i am a MA URM. I have strong recs: 1) my boss who is an alum at the school and 2) my legal writing professor in college where I received the top grade that semester in his class. I have been out of college for three years and have held a job at a firm that entire time.

Thanks again.

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dresden doll
Posts: 6802
Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:11 am

Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby dresden doll » Thu Apr 23, 2015 6:51 pm

iShotFirst wrote:Do not put "graciously" pled nolo especially since you did a more serious crime... Maybe you mean that they were gracious to offer you the plea, or 'gratefully', I hope. Graciously implies that you are doing them a favor. Schools might not care but that really sticks in my craw, maybe just because I'm a prosecutor but still.

I do agree with the poster above that you should cut out a lot of the detail especially where you plead, where you did the comm svc etc.

'Graciously' stuck out to me too and I am not a prosecutor. Should definitely be taken out.

CanadianWolf
Posts: 10439
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: Critique my Character and Fitness addendum please?

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Apr 23, 2015 8:19 pm

Consider:

On December 9, 2008, I was arrested & charged with felony grand theft, penal code section 487(a), for shoplifting textbooks valued at over $400 from the university bookstore. As a first-time offender with no prior criminal history, my charge was reduced to misdemeanor trespassing, penal code section 602(k). I pled no contest to the misdemeanor trespassing charge & was sentenced to 250 hours of community service.

This experience 7 years ago was a sobering event in my life. I have no excuse for what I did. I am ashamed of my actions.




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