Robbery is defined as using force or fear to take another individual's property while in that person's presence. A violation of California Penal Codes 211 through 215, this is an extremely serious criminal offense, a "strike" under California Three Strikes Law. At The Justice Firm, our Los Angeles robbery defense lawyers are thoroughly familiar with the serious criminal penalties those convicted of robbery face. Penalties include massive fines and time in state prison; a strike applied to your record will leave you facing harsher penalties should you ever be convicted of another criminal offense. Considered a violent felony, you may be sentenced to up to 9 years in prison.First-Degree and Second-Degree Robbery
In California, there are two types of robbery, first-degree and second-degree. The charge you face will depend on certain factors including where the offense occurred. The penalties for first-degree robbery are typically more serious than those for second-degree robbery.
Anyone who commits a robbery involving an individual's home, robbing someone in the process of using an ATM or who has just used an ATM, or in a carjacking is guilty of first-degree robbery. All other circumstances are considered second-degree robbery.What Must Los Angeles Prosecutors Prove?
There are specific elements of robbery which must be proven by prosecutors to secure a conviction. These include:
- The alleged victim was in the immediate presence of the property taken (this does not require that the victim was actually holding the property)
- The individual accused of the crime actually took the victim's personal property (property may be moved only a short distance; value of the property is irrelevant)
- Force or fear was used by the defendant to intimidate the victim (incidental contact is not considered force or fear)
- Defendant took the victim's property without the victim's consent, against his/her will
- The intent to take the property was determined prior to the use of fear or force
If convicted of first-degree robbery, penalties include 3, 4, or 6 years in state prison. However, you may face 3, 6, or 9 years in prison if yourself and two others work together to rob a home or building which is inhabited.
Second-degree robbery will leave the defendant facing 2, 3 or 5 years in state prison if convicted.
As a highly regarded Los Angeles robbery law firm, we want to ensure those accused of this serious crime understand there are "enhancements," or other factors which can contribute to sentencing. These include:
- Use of a firearm. When a firearm is used in the commission of a robbery, you may incur additional penalties which include an additional 10 years in prison, to be served consecutively.
- Discharge of a firearm. When you shoot a firearm intentionally while committing a robbery, you may have an additional 20 years added to your sentence, which will be served consecutively.
- Great bodily injury or death resulting from the discharge of a firearm. If someone suffers great bodily injury or dies due to your intentional discharge of a firearm during a robbery, an additional- 25 years to life may be added to your sentence.
- Great bodily injury. When someone suffers great bodily injury directly caused by you in committing a robbery (other than with a firearm), you may have 3 to 6 years added to your sentence to be served consecutively.
It is critical that those accused of robbery consult with a talented and aggressive Los Angeles robbery attorney right away. The sooner you seek legal guidance, the quicker work can begin to determine the best course of legal action. It takes time to do the necessary investigative and review work to build a strong defense strategy. At The Justice Firm, we are dedicated to securing positive results, protecting our clients legal rights and freedom to the utmost possible. Contact us now for a free consultation at 310-914-2444.