“Robbery” is a word used in the criminal justice system to describe the act of forcibly taking another person’s property. It’s essential to understand the legal definition of this term if you or a loved one is charged with robbery in Long Beach, CA. Many people conflate robbery with other offenses such as theft and burglary, but the reality is that robbery is a specific charge with specific criteria. The Law Offices of Henry Salcido can provide the legal counsel you need when you are charged with any robbery offense in the Long Beacharea.
It’s vital to understand the seriousness of robbery charges in the state. After years of reporting some of the highest felony crime rates in the country, California legislators passed the three strikes law in 1994, a measure that enforces a sentence of 25 years to life in prison upon a third felony conviction. California state prosecutors will almost always seek felony status for a robbery charge, so you must know your legal options for defense if you are charged with robbery in Long Beach. In this situation, you should also understand the value of reliable legal counsel from an experienced Long Beach robbery defense attorney.
If you are arrested on robbery charges, this can be an incredibly distressing and alienating experience, especially if you have been wrongfully accused. However, every American citizen has certain constitutional rights that come into play upon arrest, specifically the right to remain silent under the Fifth Amendment’s protection against self-incrimination and the right to legal counsel under the Sixth Amendment’s guarantee of legal counsel in a court of law. It’s vital to understand these rights and take full advantage of them when charged with a crime such as a robbery.
The right Long Beach robbery defense attorney can be invaluable when you or a loved one has been charged with robbery, whether you committed the act or have been wrongfully accused. Your attorney can challenge the prosecution’s evidence and prevent them from proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, the standard of proof used in criminal cases. They could also uncover exculpatory evidence the proves you have been wrongfully accused if this is what your situation demands. In addition, some cases may require expert witness testimony, and you can count on your Long Beach robbery defense attorney to arrange this for you as your case unfolds.
Many people make the mistake of choosing public defenders to represent them. If a defendant cannot afford an attorney or does not wish to pay legal fees, the court can arrange for legal representation from a public defender. While the majority of the public defenders working in the Long Beach, CA, criminal court system are capable attorneys, they manage many cases at once and cannot provide their clients much in the way of individualized attention. A private Long Beach robbery defense attorney can offer more personalized defense representation, more responsive updates as your case unfolds, and ultimately can provide a better chance of securing the best possible outcome for your case.
Robbery is a very explicitly defined criminal offense in the California criminal justice system. Unfortunately, many people confuse robbery with other offenses such as theft and burglary. However, the elements that must be proven to establish robbery are very clear in California’s criminal code:
Robbery contains many parallels with theft, but the differentiating factor is that robbery must occur in the victim’s immediate presence. Theft can occur without the victim’s immediate knowledge and may be discovered later. Robbery is also often conflated with burglary, a separate criminal charge pertaining to the theft of property from a business or a person’s home, but burglary is generally conducted when the victim is unaware of what is happening.
It’s also vital to understand how aggravating factors come into play in robbery cases. For example, if the offender used a weapon to conduct a robbery, they can be charged with armed robbery. If they injured the victim during the robbery, they could face a charge of felony assault and battery. Finally, if they injured the victim with a deadly weapon, they could face a charge of assault with a deadly weapon even if they did not kill the victim.
Anyone charged with robbery of any kind faces a felony conviction under California’s criminal code. First-degree robbery can carry a sentence of up to six years in prison and $10,000 in fines, and second-degree robbery carries a sentence of up to five years in prison and $10,000 in fines. If the defendant used a firearm when they committed the robbery, they would face 10 additional years in prison. If they discharged the firearm during the robbery, whether with intent to harm the victim or scare them, they face an additional 20 years in prison. If the defendant fired a gun and hurt or killed the victim, their sentence could escalate to 25 years to life in prison.
It’s essential to have reliable legal counsel on your side from a trustworthy Long Beach robbery defense attorney if you face robbery charges, especially if you are concerned about California’s three strikes law. Your attorney can help you challenge the prosecution’s evidence, potentially inhibiting them from proving the necessary elements of robbery required for the robbery charge to stick. In addition, a good attorney can help you plead down to lower charges if necessary or work toward securing case dismissal when you have been wrongfully accused.
It is natural to have many questions and to feel uncertain about your situation when you have been charged with robbery in California. However, the attorneys at the Law Offices of Henry Salcido can provide clarity and confidence when you need it most. If you are ready to discuss your defense with a Long Beach robbery defense attorney, contact us today to schedule your consultation.