Anyone facing robbery accusations deserves to receive an excellent defense. A proper understanding of what separates robbery from other similar charges, as well as some of the elements of a case that may provide a good basis for a defense, will help you know how to proceed if you or someone you know faces robbery charges.
The State of New York recognizes three separate degrees of robbery charges (covered in previous blog posts), each with separate penalties. Robbery charges are distinguished separately from larceny charges in that a robbery charge indicates there was some threat of physical force put upon the owner of property. Robbery is also classified separately from charges of larceny by extortion. Larceny thorough extortion entails some threat of future harm or physical injury, while charges of robbery entail an immediate threat of physical force or harm at the time of the accused crime.
For those facing robbery charges, they might successfully mount a defense based on some of the following conditions. If, for instance, there is a firearm present in a robbery situation, but the firearm was not loaded and therefore unable to be discharged, charges of first-degree robbery may be reduced. Likewise, those facing robbery charges may be able to have them reduced or dismissed if they can prove they participated in the robbery while under duress, due to a mental illness, or while still legally considered a child under 14 years of age.
Robbery charges can be a messy and damaging ordeal for anyone to face, and they deserve to be defended against just as much as any other criminal charges. Those facing charges of robbery may know that an experienced criminal defense attorney increases the likelihood of having their charges reduced or dismissed.