Robbery differs from general theft due to the fact that the property being taken from another is obtained by way of violence or intimidation. Robbery does not necessarily always involve the use of a dangerous weapon, but where it does it is referred to as armed robbery. Depending on the specifics, robbery can be charged as first degree or second degree but is always considered a felony. If you have been charged with a robbery crime, contact an experienced Los Angeles robbery defense attorney from Martinian Lawyers and receive a free consultation.
Robbery Defined: Understanding the Law
One of the most common forms of the theft crimes, the criminal charge of robbery refers to the actual taking of someone else’s property from their immediate presence or off their person, as defined by California Penal § Code 211. There are several elements that must be proven in a robbery case.
This includes the following:
- You took someone else’s property. It must be proven that you gained possession of property that you knew belonged to another person and took it away. To be convicted there must have been some form of movement.
- You took the property from someone’s body or from their immediate presence. When you took the property, it was either something that was being carried by the victim or it was in their immediate presence. This person does not need to be the owner of the property but they must have what is deemed to be “possessory interest” in the stolen good.
- You took property against the will of the owner. This is, in simplest terms, defined as taking something against the consent of the owner. It, however, is important to remember that consent given out of fear is not considered free will and therefore still fulfills these elements.
- You used either force or fear to take the property. Under the law, these elements are essentially the same thing and mean either using violence or the threat of potential violence to get the victim to turn over the item in question. For example, pulling a gun would be using fear.
- You had the intention to deprive the owner. This could mean intending to deprive the owner of the item permanently or even temporarily, should it be proven that your taking would cause them to lose out in a major portion of the enjoyment of the property or its value.
Contact a Knowledgeable Los Angeles Robbery Defense Attorney
It is thus especially important that a Los Angeles robbery defense lawyer from our firm be retained to defend you. Even a first felony conviction puts one in a very precarious position as to potential penalties now or in the future. Even if you are suspected of such a crime, if legal representation is retained early enough it is possible your attorney may be able to prevent charges from even being filed.
At Martinian Lawyers, we will conduct a thorough investigation of your case in an attempt to uncover details which may be used in your defense. For example, the prosecution must prove that the theft involved a victim who felt threatened. The judgment of this requirement opens the door to reasonable doubt potentially being cast. Where applicable, we will be thorough in ensuring this point is considered by the court. Our Los Angeles criminal defense lawyers will pursue any avenue which may lead to an improvement in your legal position and will work with the goal of dismissed charges or an acquittal.