Police and prosecutors in California are known to be aggressive when seeking to arrest and prosecute someone for a robbery charge. If you are arrested for robbery, you could be facing a long prison term, a steep fine, and a permanent criminal record. Additionally, a robbery conviction is a strike according to California’s Three Strikes Law. For these reasons, it is important to seek a skilled robbery defense lawyer as soon as possible if you are being investigated. Elliot Silver has defended many clients over the years, and he understands how to help you during this difficult time.
Contact Silver Law Firm today to discuss your defense with experienced Oakland defense lawyer Elliot Silver. He will be your advocate throughout your entire case, and he’ll fight hard to ensure that your rights and freedoms are protected.
Call Silver Law Firm today at (510) 995-0000 to schedule a review of your case.
California’s Definition of Robbery Crimes
California Penal Code (PC) 211 defines robbery as “the taking of someone else’s property from their person or immediate presence, against their will, with the use of force or intimidation.” Robbery is classified as a violent felony. State law establishes two separate degrees of robbery which are defined by the circumstances of the offense:
- First degree robbery (PC 212.5 (a) and (b))- This charge applies when the crimes takes place in a home, dwelling, or the inhabited part of a building or vessel; the victim was on the job as a taxi driver or transit operator; or the victim was using, or in the immediate vicinity of, an ATM. A first-degree robbery conviction can result in a maximum prison sentence of six years.
- Second degree robbery (PC 212.5 (c))- Ssecond-degree robbery includes all kinds of robbery other than those charged under the first-degree statute. It can still result in a prison sentence of up to five years.
Elements of Robbery
In order to prove your guilt for a robbery charge, the prosecutor must prove that all of the elements of a robbery are true beyond a reasonable doubt. Robbery is not merely taking something that does not belong to you. An essential element to prove a robbery charge as true is the use of threats or force. Elements of a robbery according to California PC 211 include:
- You knowingly took the property of someone else. This includes moving someone else’s property to another location.
- You did not have the property owner’s consent to take their belongings. Consent must be freely given. Therefore, consent cannot be given under duress or threats of violence.
- The property was in the possession of the complaining witness when it was taken. In this case, possession is considered to be something that is in the immediate presence of the alleged victim. It is not necessary that the alleged victim is physically holding the property in their hands when you take it.
- You used fear or force when taking the property. This can include cases where a weapon is used in the crime, but it also can apply to any situation where the alleged victim felt threatened or that they were in danger while being robbed. This may also include fear of injury to anyone in the company of the person being robbed.
Penalties For a Robbery Conviction
If you are found guilty of a robbery charge, you may be sentenced to many years in prison. A first-degree robbery conviction is punishable by three, four, or six years in prison. A second-degree conviction can result in two, three, or five years in prison. Additionally, if you and at least two other defendants acted together to rob a home or dwelling, your conviction could land you in prison for up to nine years. The judge overseeing your case will consider many factors when deciding your punishment, which will likely include a fine, but California law also makes punishment more severe if certain enhancements apply to your case.
These sentence enhancements include:
- If you cause great bodily injury while committing a robbery, you can be facing an additional six years in prison.
- The use of a firearm in a robbery can result in an additional 10 years in prison.
- Discharging a firearm while committing an armed robbery can bring an additional or consecutive prison term of up to 20 years.
- If you cause great bodily harm with the discharge of a firearm while committing a robbery, you may be facing an additional prison term of 25 years to life.
Any potential prison term is daunting, but the possibility of spending your life in a state prison is downright terrifying. That’s why you need a criminal defense attorney who will be a champion for your freedom. That attorney is Elliot Silver. If you’re facing the possibility of any amount of time in prison due to a robbery charge, call him immediately.
Defenses Against Robbery Charges
Every criminal case is unique, and your case has its own details. Silver Law Firm will consider the individual facts and evidence of your case when building a defense against your charges of robbery. It is important to understand that the prosecution must prove every element of robbery for you to be found guilty of this crime. Some of the possible defenses that might be appropriate in your case are:
- You did not actually take the property – You can only be found guilty of robbery if it can be shown that you actually took someone else’s belongings.
- You did not use force or fear – If you took something without the alleged victim’s knowledge, then it cannot be shown that you took their property by force. Additionally, if it is determined that the other person’s fear was completely unreasonable, then your robbery charges cannot stand.
- A case of mistaken identity – Sometimes defendants accused of crimes are wrongfully accused. In fact, they had nothing to do with the crime, and they are simply charged because the police or victim mistook them for the actual offender.
Silver Law Firm Can Help You
Robbery charges are taken very seriously in California, and they can land you in prison for years. Additionally, a felony robbery conviction can result in large fines and a permanent criminal record. If you are facing charges for a robbery crime, you will need a skilled defense lawyer in order to protect your rights. Attorney Elliot Silver has years of experience as a champion for those in your situation, and he is ready to help you during this difficult time.
To speak with an Oakland robbery defense lawyer, contact Silver Law Firm today. Call attorney Elliot Silver at (510) 995-0000.