Robbery is a serious crime, one that could be charged as a second-degree or a first-degree crime depending on the circumstances. As such, it comes with quite severe punishments: a conviction for second-degree robbery will land you five to ten years in prison and a fine of up to $150,000; first-degree robbery could see you in prison for twenty years!
It’s clear that robbery is no joke. That’s why we’re going to look at the potential defenses that an experienced attorney will use to help you so you don’t end up doing serious time. But in order to understand those defenses, we’re going to first need to see how robbery is different from a crime like theft. Once we understand what sets robbery apart, we can look at what the prosecution has to prove to show that you are guilty and how we build defenses around those core concepts.
You might think of robbery and theft as interchangeable terms but they have very specific meanings set out for them in our laws. Robbery is basically an upgraded form of theft. N.H.S.A. 2C:15-1 lays out three particular actions that will upgrade a theft into a robbery:
These three criteria have some clear overlap with one another, but that only makes it easier to define robbery. However, we should take a closer look at a few of those terms:
These are important features of robbery to keep in mind, as the prosecution will need to use them if they’re to win the case against you.
Winning a robbery conviction is a lot harder to do than winning a conviction for theft. The actual criteria that are used to determine whether a robbery charge is applicable don’t focus on the theft component of robbery but rather on additional elements present during the theft crime. As such, the prosecution needs to show the court that:
There is an additional point that the prosecution has to prove if the robbery is of the first degree. For a robbery charge to stick at this level the prosecution has to show that you attempted to kill somebody, purposefully inflicted or tried to inflict serious bodily injury, or you were armed with, used, or threatened to use a deadly weapon.
In America, you are innocent until proven guilty. The prosecution needs to prove each of these points in order to show that you are guilty of robbery. An experienced attorney will help you to come up with defenses that show that your case fails to meet all of the required components necessary to get a robbery conviction.
There are a number of potential defenses against a robbery charge. They primarily focus on disproving one or more of those key points which the prosecution has to prove. For example, it is important that any actions that end in bodily injury were done purposefully; so if it can be shown that any bodily injury came about due to an accident and not your own purposeful action, there is a chance to reduce the charge.
Other ways in which an attorney will help create a defense or reduce the charges are:
These are just a few of the potential defenses and techniques which experienced attorneys use to help defend their clients from robbery charges here in New Jersey.
If you are facing a robbery charge in New Jersey then you’ve already seen that they are no joke. The potential punishments for robbery are quite serious. That’s why it’s important that you take the charges seriously and reach out to a great attorney like those at The Hernandez Law Firm, P.C.
Our attorneys are ready to listen to your situation and help investigate the truth, to find that piece of evidence that will prove your innocence and let you move on from this troubling experience. You shouldn’t have to face this alone, an attorney is waiting to help you prove your innocence.