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Robbery is taking something by force or by threat of force. In jurisdictions that distinguish robbery from lesser theft crimes, it is always a felony. If someone commits robbery with a weapon, it is considered armed robbery. When a deadly weapon is used along with force, it is considered aggravated robbery. If you have been charged with robbery, a criminal defense attorney can help you.

Robbery Penalties

With robbery, the penalty depends on the severity of the incident and on aspects about victims. Robbery charges are often classified in degrees. First-degree robbery occurs if someone commits aggravated robbery or if a victim is seriously injured during the incident. Second-degree robbery may involve a minor injury with a deadly weapon or the use of an accomplice. A third-degree robbery occurs when someone uses force with a deadly weapon and does not cause any injuries. Robberies of people or most businesses are tried in state courts and involve sentencing guidelines for prison terms. For example, California judges can choose sentence terms of two, three or five years depending on the details of the case. Restitution is also a consideration in robbery cases, and the amount depends on the extent of damages to the victim.

Robberies in government buildings or banks are punished more severely at a federal level. According to Title 18 of the U.S. Code, a person who forcibly takes more than $1,000 from a bank, a credit union or another financial institution may face up to 20 years in prison. It is also a federal crime to rob an authorized business of a controlled substance. When this happens, a person may face up to 25 years in federal prison.

How Criminal Defense Attorneys Help

First, it is important to understand that a private criminal defense attorney is different than an attorney who is an appointed public defender. A private attorney has more time to devote to your case. This means that there is more time to analyze every detail of the incident to build the best defense for you. There may have been issues with the arrest, and there may have been police misconduct. A private attorney will protect you from intimidation attempts by police or the prosecutor. Also, a private criminal defense attorney will ensure that your constitutional rights are protected whether you fight the case while you are in jail or out on bail.

Since a good criminal defense attorney has experience with all types of robbery cases, you can rest assured that your lawyer will build convincing arguments that will benefit you. An attorney’s goal is to have the case dismissed. However, if that goal is impossible, your lawyer will work hard to negotiate a good deal for a lesser charge or a lighter sentence. Factors such as prior convictions, any involved victims and specific details of the incident influence the outcome of a trial or a deal negotiation. Since any kind of robbery conviction can drastically change your life, it is crucial to work with a private criminal defense lawyer who will protect your freedom and prioritize your future.

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