Los Angeles Robbery Lawyer
Robbery is the taking of a possession of a person. Differentiated from theft by the fact that theft is an offense against property and robbery is an offense against a person, a robbery charge is more highly penalized due to its potential to harm the victim of the offense. PC 211 is the California law that governs the crime of robbery. Always a felony, robbery is defined as the "taking of personal property in the possession of another, from his person or immediate presence, and against his will, accomplished by means of force or fear." Consequently, for the taking to constitute a robbery, the possession must be taken from either the owner's person or in his or her immediate presence.
Penalties for Robbery
The amount and/or value of the personal property taken during a robbery is immaterial. Therefore, no matter how slight the value of the property taken is, if you commit a robbery, you face the same punishment for committing the crime as you would had you robbed a bank. According to PC 213, punishment for a conviction of robbery is as follows.
- First degree robbery is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three to six years. If the first degree robbery is committed by three or more people, the punishment can increase to up to nine years in a state prison.
- Second degree robbery is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for two to five years.
- Attempted robbery, a situation in which the intent to commit robbery is evident but not accomplished, is also punishable by imprisonment.
Armed Robbery is a More Serious Crime than Robbery
Armed robbery is usually considered to be more serious than a robbery which is committed without a weapon present. Consequently, an armed robbery conviction is subject to additional prison time with the number of years added to sentencing being dependent upon the type and number of firearms used in the commission of the crime.
In a case of an armed robbery trial (or any robbery trial), much of the prosecutor's case relies on the identification of the alleged defendant and whether or not the alleged victim is able to identify the defendant beyond any doubt. Identification is usually established through a physical lineup or photo array, a process that can frequently be proven to be tainted in some way. Other factors that determine the validity of the prosecutor's case is the determination of whether or not a case has been developed that preserves the rights of the defendant and that due process was received by the defendant. If the identification process is able to be suppressed or the rights of the defendant were violated, the evidence collected by the prosecution may be thrown out and no case pursued.
An experienced, skilled robbery criminal defense lawyer will often attempt to suppress evidence of a weapon in an alleged robbery by challenging the procedures used to obtain the weapon. Law enforcement officers must perform search and seizure procedures in a precise way. Anytime those procedures are not strictly adhered to, a motion to suppress the weapon evidence may be successful, meaning that the charges could be reduced from armed robbery to unarmed robbery or larceny. Depending upon the circumstances of the successful suppression, all charges may be completely dismissed.
R.J. Manuelian Handles Defense of Robbery Charges in Los Angeles
If you have been arrested or charged with robbery, attempted robbery, or armed robbery in Los Angeles, R.J. Manuelian is a Los Angeles theft criminal defense lawyer with the skill to assist you in your defense. With extensive criminal defense experience, R.J. diligently fights for the rights of his clients and uses his many resources to challenge the prosecutor's case and craft a defense strategy to facilitate the best possible outcome for your case.