NATIONALLY RECOGNIZED FEDERAL LAWYERS
Last Updated on: 15th August 2023, 12:13 am
Armed Robbery: Understanding the Crime and its Consequences
Armed robbery is a crime that occurs when an individual uses a deadly weapon while stealing another person’s property. This act can involve violence or the mere threat of it. While most states do not specifically recognize the term “armed robbery,” it is commonly referred to as aggravated robbery. The use of a deadly weapon elevates the severity of the crime, making it a more serious offense.
The Prosecution’s Burden of Proof
In cases involving a defendant charged with aggravated robbery, the prosecution must establish certain elements beyond a reasonable doubt to secure a conviction. These elements include:
1. Taking Property from Another Person
Robbery occurs when an individual takes someone else’s personal property without their consent. The victim does not necessarily have to be the owner of the property. For example, if someone borrowed a bicycle from a friend and it was stolen while they were using it, the crime would still be considered robbery.
2. Taking Property from Someone’s Person or Presence
Robbery involves taking property directly from a person or in their presence. This means the item can be snatched from the victim’s hand or forcibly taken while the victim witnesses the crime.
3. Carrying the Property Away
The defendant must physically carry the stolen property away. Exercising control over the item also constitutes robbery.
4. Intent to Permanently Deprive the Possessor
For the act to be considered robbery, the defendant must have intended to permanently deprive the victim of their property.
5. Use of Violence or Intimidation
In aggravated robbery cases, the defendant must have used violence or intimidation. For instance, forcefully shoving a person to the ground while stealing their purse constitutes an act of violence. Intimidation can also be a factor.
6. Use of a Dangerous Weapon
Aggravated robbery involves the use of a dangerous or deadly weapon. If the defendant brandished a gun while stealing from a person, it qualifies as aggravated robbery.
7. Carrying a Dangerous Weapon
If the defendant carried a deadly weapon during the robbery, it is considered aggravated robbery.
Common Defenses for Aggravated Robbery
Several defenses can be employed in cases of aggravated robbery:
1. Mistaken Identity
A common defense is to claim mistaken identity, asserting that the defendant was not the perpetrator of the crime.
2. Claim of Ownership
In some states, the defense can argue that the defendant was taking what rightfully belonged to them.
3. Challenging the Use or Threat of Force
The defense can challenge the use or threat of force in an aggravated robbery case. For example, if the victim believed they saw a knife in the defendant’s pocket but the weapon was never used, the defense attorney can argue for a lesser charge or even simple robbery.
4. False Allegations
The defense may claim that false allegations have been made against the defendant.
5. Improper Arrest
Improper arrest is another defense commonly used in aggravated robbery cases.
Penalties for Aggravated Robbery
Aggravated robbery is a felony offense, regardless of the value of the stolen item. As it involves the use of a dangerous weapon, the penalties are severe, including a lengthy prison sentence and substantial fines.
If you are facing charges of aggravated robbery, it is crucial to seek the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney. They can provide the best chance of reducing or potentially dismissing the charges against you.