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Pennsylvania Robbery Lawyer
Robbery is a type of felony theft and assault offense combined. Being accused of robbery is much more serious than simply being accused of taking items that do not belong to you. If you face criminal charges for this offense, you may wish to talk to a Pennsylvania robbery lawyer for advice. An attorney can help you to try to protect your future by reducing the charges or penalties as part of a plea agreement or by presenting a case in a criminal trial to try to avoid a guilty verdict.
Robbery Laws in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania Code Section 3701 defines the offense of robbery. Under this law, a person is guilty of robbery if he does certain actions while committing a theft. Theft is defined as the taking of money, assets, property, or services that do not belong to you in order to intentionally deprive the rightful owner of their value. Robbery involves doing one of the following:
- Inflicting serious bodily injury in the course of the theft.
- Threatening the use of immediate serious bodily injury, or intentionally making someone feel a reasonable fear of imminent serious injury, in order to take items.
- Committing or threatening to commit any first or second degree felony while engaging in theft.
- Using any type of force to take something from someone’s person, regardless of the degree of force.
- Taking or removing money from a financial institution by making demands of an employee or with the intent to deprive the institution of assets, property, or money without permission.
Depending upon your assaultive actions during an alleged theft, you may be charged with a first, second, or third degree felony. For example, taking money from a financial institution and using any force is a second degree felony. Physically removing property from a person using any degree of force is a third degree felony. Inflicting serious bodily injury on another person in the course of a theft is a first degree felony.
A first degree felony can result in more than 10 years of prison. A second degree felony can result in up to 10 years of prison, and a third degree felony can result in as long as seven years of incarceration. With up to a decade of prison time on the line, you should consider working with an aggressive Pennsylvania robbery lawyer who can assist you in mounting an effective defense in court.
What a Pennsylvania Robbery Lawyer Can Do For You
There are a number of ways that you or your Pennsylvania robbery lawyer may be able to defend yourself against a robbery charge. For example, you could argue:
- Lack of proof: If the prosecutor cannot put together a strong enough case to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed robbery, there should be no conviction.
- Lack of intent: You did not intend to commit theft using force, threats, or during a felony.
- Rightful owner: You could argue that the property you were trying to take belonged to you and that you were its true owner. If you used force or inflicted bodily injury while taking the property, you may still face charges for the violent actions even if you were the rightful owner of the items you took.
- Duress: You were forced into committing a robbery as a result of a reasonable fear of serious bodily injury or death to yourself or others.
A Pennsylvania robbery lawyer can help you to make the most informed choices when dealing with your charges. Contact an attorney today for help.