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Robbery Defense

Robbery Under Florida Law and its Classifications

Robbery Defense- Police officer from behindRobbery is defined by Florida Statutes and is committed when a person intentionally and unlawfully takes money or property from another person through the use of force, violence, assault, or threat. Often the Courts will refer to this as “strong-arm” robbery. The crime of Strong Arm Robbery is a second degree felony and punishable by up to 15years in prison, up to 15 years of probation, and up to $10,000 in fines.

Types of Robbery Offenses

There are a variety of other classifications of Robbery and varying penalties. Often these charges can require an offender to serve time in prison depending on the circumstances. These classifications include:

  1. Home invasion Robbery: Home invasion robbery is committed when a person enters a dwelling (house, etc.) with the intent to unlawfully take money or property from the occupants through the use of force, violence, assault, or threat. Home invasion Robbery is a first degree felony and punishable by up to 30 years in prison, up to 30 years of probation, and up to $10,000 in fines.
  2. Carjacking: It is a form of Robbery and is committed when a person intentionally and unlawfully takes another person's motor vehicle (car) through the use of force, violence, assault, or threat. Carjacking is a first degree felony and punishable by up to 30 years in prison, up to 30 years of probation, and up to $10,000 in fines.
  3. Robbery by Sudden Snatching: It is where the State does not have to prove that force, violence, or threats were used. A person need only intentionally and unlawfully take money or property from the body of another person. The crime of Robbery by Sudden Snatching is a third degree felony and punishable by up to 5years in prison, up to 5 years of probation, and up to $5,000 in fines.
  4. Robbery with a Deadly Weapon: It is committed when a person intentionally and unlawfully takes money or property from another by the use of force, violence, assault, or threat while also being in possession of a deadly weapon. A person only need to possess the deadly weapon. A deadly weapon can be any weapon that is used, or threatened to be used, in a way likely to produce death or great bodily harm. The crime of Robbery with a Deadly Weapon is a first degree felony and punishable by up to 30 years in prison, up to 30 years of probation, and up to $10,000 in fines.
  5. Robbery with a Firearm: It is committed when a person intentionally and unlawfully takes money or property from another by the use of force, violence, assault, or threat while also being in possession of a firearm. A person only need to possess the firearm. The crime of Robbery with a Firearm is punished with a minimum mandatory under the 10/20/Life Enhancement and is punishable by up to life in prison, life on probation, and up to $15,000 in fines. Under the 10/20/Life statute, and depending on how the firearm was used, a person convicted of Robbery with a Firearm could receive a minimum 10 years in prison if in possession of a firearm; a minimum 20 years in prison if the firearm was discharged; and a minimum 25 years in prison if someone is injured or killed by the firearm.

Enhancements in potential penalties often occur and involve minimum mandatory prison sentences where a Firearm or Deadly Weapon was possessed while committing a Robbery as mentioned above.

Defense to Robbery Charges - Some Strategies

The State usually tries to prove robbery cases in two ways: direct evidence (ex. witness identification) or circumstantial evidence (ex. fingerprints). If the State tries to prove the case with direct evidence such as a witness testimony, our attorneys will extensively investigate into the witness’ background by examining whether the witness has any prior arrest record, history of mental illness, drug or alcohol addiction, drug or alcohol use the day of the incident, the witness’ ability to see or know things he or she is testifying about, or any personal motive the witness may have against our client. Studies show that eyewitness testimonies are among the least reliable evidence that should be utilized.

If the State has circumstantial evidence, such as fingerprints, DNA, the suspect being found in recent possession of stolen property, or forensic evidence, we will investigate the methods the police used in preserving the evidence, and whether that evidence is sufficient for the State to prove the robbery charges.

Our Defense Attorneys are Here to Help!

The State usually has very experienced prosecutors assigned to handle robbery charges; this is why It is so important to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney if you are charged or arrested for any type of Robbery in Orlando, Kissimmee or anywhere in Central Florida. You may have a valid defense(s) to the charge of robbery if the taking of property occurs as an afterthought to the use of force or violence. Likewise, a claim of right defense may be possible if the person taking the property has a good faith belief that he or she is legally the owner or entitled to possession of the property taken. It is important to have an experience criminal defense attorney analyze your case step-by-step to determine the proper charges and potential defenses.

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