iStock_000016771406_FullIn the State of California, robbery is defined under Penal Code 211. According to Penal Code 211, robbery is the felonious taking of personal property in the possession of someone else and against the will of that person by using fear or force. When charged with robbery, the prosecution has to prove in court that the defendant took property belonging to someone else and to specifically deprive the owner of the use of his or her belongings. In accordance with California Penal Code 211, someone can be charged with first degree robbery or second degree robbery, based on the circumstances surrounding the offense. Commonly, a person is charged with first degree robbery when the incident took place in a home, apartment or hotel room. If it took place elsewhere, such as in a place of business, including a store, then a second degree robbery charge typically results.

Punishment for a robbery conviction

California Penal Code 211 governs the punishment for robbery in the state. The punishment and sentencing depends on if the offense was charged as a first degree or second degree robbery. If an individual was charged and then convicted of a first degree robbery, he or she could spend between three to six years in a state prison. An individual charged and then convicted of second degree robbery may be punished by having to spend two to five years in a  state prison. It is important to note, specific circumstances surrounding the robbery case could lead to enhancements to a person’s punishment for the crime. Depending on the exact circumstances, an individual convicted of robbery could be sentenced to more time in jail than the typical range for first degree robbery or a second degree robbery conviction. A robbery conviction also could count as a strike on one’s criminal record in California.

Defenses to Penal Code 211

If you or someone you loved have been charged with robbery under California Penal Code 211, it is crucial to contact a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney in the state who help you draw up a defense to use in court. There are numerous defenses to robbery that a defense lawyer could raise on someone’s behalf to create doubt concerning your guilt. Perhaps, you did not take property that belonged to someone else because that item or items first rightfully belonged to you. Maybe, you were just reclaiming your own property. Furthermore, maybe, you did not use fear or force when taking the property. In addition, you may have lacked the intent to deprive the original owner from using the item or items taken. It is important to discuss the full details of your robbery case to select the most appropriate defense. If you are facing charges, contact my office today to learn how I can be of help.