Understanding the elements of robbery if you are accused

When you are charged with a crime, you are not automatically considered guilty of that accusation. Our court system is set up to be as fair as possible to all, though obviously nothing is perfect. The fallibility of people and human-made systems is why it's so important that you don't trust completely in the system and ensure you have an experienced professional on your side.

If you are facing a robbery charge, then it's important to understand what normally constitutes a robbery. If you can show that all those elements aren't evidenced, then you have a chance at beating the charge or pleading to a lower charge. For example, a robbery requires that someone takes something while having the intent to steal it -- accidentally walking off with something or legitimately borrowing something doesn't count.

The item taken has to be the personal property of another person or entity. Robbery also involves taking the item from the person directly or within their presence. Stealing something from a home when no one else is home is not robbery, that is a different crime that comes with different consequences.

Finally, robbery requires that the item is taken against the person's will and with some threat of force or intimidation. If you simply slip a wallet out of someone's pocket without them knowing about it and walk off, that's not robbery. Again, it's a different crime.

Understanding the definition of a crime is one of the first steps in building a valid defense strategy against criminal charges. Our firm works with you so you understand exactly what is happening and what your options for responding to charges are.

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