Many people believe that robbery is the same thing as theft, but that’s not the case. Both robbery and theft are serious offenses, but robbery is considered a violent crime, which means it carries far more severe penalties.
Don’t make the mistake of taking a robbery charge lightly—fight for your freedom with the help of the experienced criminal defense attorneys at The Hernandez Law Firm.
What Elements Must Be Proven in A New Jersey Robbery Case?
There are several elements that must be proven in order to convict someone of robbery in New Jersey. These elements are:
- The defendant committed theft, which involves stealing someone else’s property.
- While committing theft, the defendant either:
- Used force on someone, or
- Inflicted injury on someone, or
- Threatened someone or put them in fear of bodily injury, or
- Committed or attempted to commit a first- or second-degree crime.
The defendant only needs to engage in one of these four acts while committing theft in order to face robbery charges. You can face robbery charges if any of these four acts occurs either while you are attempting to steal or actually stealing someone’s property.
You can also be charged with robbery if any of these four acts occurs immediately after you attempt to steal or steal from someone. For example, if you steal someone’s handbag and threaten to seriously injure them as you flee, this would be considered robbery.
Is Robbery Charged As A Misdemeanor or Felony?
In New Jersey, criminal acts are classified as either disorderly persons offenses or indictable crimes. Robbery is an indictable crime. It is charged as either a first- or second-degree indictable crime depending on the nature of the offense.
Most robbery offenses are second-degree crimes. However, robbery is a first-degree crime if the defendant attempts to kill someone or causes or attempts to cause serious bodily injury while committing theft. You will also face first-degree robbery charges if you used, threatened to use, or were armed with a deadly weapon at the time of the crime.
What Penalties Can You Face For A Robbery Conviction?
Both first- and second-degree robbery charges can carry harsh penalties. If you are convicted of second-degree robbery, you may be sentenced to between 5 to 10 years in prison. First-degree robbery charges can lead to between 10 to 20 years in prison. Because robbery is a serious violent crime, offenders are required to serve a minimum of 85% of their prison sentence before they become eligible for parole.
Prison time isn’t the only legal penalty that is imposed on robbery offenders. Defendants who are convicted of robbery may also be required to pay thousands of dollars in fines. The court may also order the defendant to pay restitution to the victims of the crime.
These penalties will continue to negatively impact your life long after your prison sentence is over. Having a robbery conviction on your record can impact your ability to find employment, gain admission at a college or university, or find housing. The best way to avoid these penalties is to seek legal representation from a robbery lawyer at The Hernandez Law Firm.
How A Criminal Defense Attorney Can Beat Robbery Charges in New Jersey
A criminal defense lawyer can fight robbery charges in a number of different ways. Our attorneys may be able to weaken the prosecutor’s case by getting key pieces of evidence dismissed. If evidence was gathered during an illegal search, for example, it cannot be used against you. If enough evidence is dismissed, the prosecutor may decide to drop the charges. Our criminal defense attorneys may also be able to negotiate with the prosecutor for reduced charges.
If your case goes to trial, the attorneys at The Hernandez Law Firm will continue to challenge the state’s evidence and assert your innocence. We will work tirelessly to prepare a strong case that will convince the jury to return a not guilty verdict. From the start to the finish, our attorneys will stand by your side to protect your rights and fight for a favorable outcome.
Discuss Your Case During A Free Consultation With Our Robbery Attorneys Today In New Jersey
Have you been charged with robbery? There’s no time to waste. The sooner you contact The Hernandez Law Firm, the sooner we can begin protecting your rights. Our skilled robbery lawyers have decades of experience helping the accused protect their freedom by beating their charges. Let us aggressively pursue the best possible outcome in your case. To learn more about your legal options, schedule a free consultation by calling 732-286-2700 or filling out the form on our website today.