Regardless of the circumstances of your robbery arrest, you need to take immediate action. Scott Mitchell Law Incorporated can begin to build a solid case on your behalf, but the first step is in your hands. Schedule your free initial case evaluation with the firm's Modesto criminal defense lawyer today.
Robbery Laws in California
According to California Penal Code §211, Robbery is "the felonious taking of personal property in the possession of another." A person commits robbery when he/she takes something valuable from the immediate presence of the person who owns the property. California robbery law also states that the act must be "accomplished by means of force or fear." CA Penal Code § 212.1, a robber is often guilty of instilling:
- Fear of bodily injury
- Fear of property damage
- Fear of harm to the victim's family
§ 212.2 of the California Penal Code states that "fear" can also refer to a situation where the suspect threatens to harm a third party who is in the immediate vicinity of the alleged crime. A person could violate § 212.2 of the California Penal Code by threatening to shoot an innocent third party unless the victim relinquishes his/her wallet. The same person could violate § 212.1 by threatening to hurt the individual being robbed instead of a bystander.
First Degree Robbery in California
California Penal Code § 212.5 states that a person is guilty of first degree robbery when he/she robs a bus driver, taxicab driver, cable car operator, streetcar operation, trackless trolley operator, or other vehicle operator. Penal Code § 212.5 includes suspended cable cars and other forms of paid transportation. In order for the court to consider this type of robbery as a first degree offense, the suspect must attempt to rob the operator while he/she performs his/her duties. ATM robberies are also considered first degree crimes. An individual commits first degree robbery when he/she robs from a person who is using an Automated Tell Machine (ATM) or shortly after the victims used the ATM. Any robbery that does not qualify as first degree robbery is a second degree offense.
What are the penalties for robbery?
Robbery is punishable by incarceration. The duration of imprisonment is determined by the defendant's prior criminal convictions and the nature of the robbery. First degree robbery is punishable by three, four, or six years in prison. If the suspect committed robbery in a house or inhabited vessel, the court may sentence the defendant to three, six, or nine years in a state prison. Second degree robbery is punishable by two, three, or five years in a state prison.
Robbery and Carjacking in California
Carjacking is a specific type of robbery. According to California Penal Code § 215(a), carjacking occurs when an individual takes a motor vehicle while it is in the possession of another person. Like simple robbery, a suspect commits carjacking when he/she takes the vehicle from the immediate presence of the car's owner. The defendant can also commit carjacking by take the car from a vehicle passenger.
Carjacking must be accomplished by means of fear or force. Like robbery, carjacking occurs when the suspect threatens or intimidates the victim into relinquishing the vehicle. Carjacking is a serious form of robbery, punishable in a state prison for three, five or nine years.
Common Robbery Defense Strategies
If you or a loved one was arrested for robbery in Modesto or the surrounding area, you need an experienced and aggressive representative to stand up for your rights in court. To obtain a conviction, the prosecution must demonstrate two things in court. First, prosecutors must show that you intended to take someone else's property. Secondly, the prosecutor must prove that you used force or fear to take the property. Without these two elements, you prosecutors will not be able to obtain a conviction.
Common defense strategies combat these elements by claiming that the defendant:
- Did not intend to take any property
- Did not threaten the victim
Our team's Modesto criminal defense lawyer has provided high-quality legal representation to clients in more than 3,000 cases. Let us put this experience to work for your case and call Scott Mitchell Law Incorporated today!