Have you been charged with robbery in San Diego, California? A conviction can carry harsh penalties, including the possibility of time in state prison. The experienced San Diego robbery lawyers at Blair Defense Criminal Lawyers can help you fight to protect your future.
Attorney Peter Blair has dedicated his legal career to criminal defense. After more than a decade, he’s developed a reputation for being a top legal advocate for people in San Diego who are facing serious and potentially life-altering San Diego criminal charges including DUI, sex crimes, drug crimes, domestic violence, white-collar crimes, and more.
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How Our San Diego Criminal Defense Lawyers Can Help You Fight Robbery Charges
Robbery is always a felony offense in the state of California. So, you can be certain that the government will work hard to convict. In order to level the playing field, you’ll need an experienced criminal defense attorney in San Diego in your corner.
Since 2010, attorney Peter Blair has been providing top-tier legal representation to clients throughout San Diego. He fights to ensure that each client’s rights are protected and that they’re given every opportunity to defend themselves against serious felony robbery and theft charges.
Here’s why you’ll want Blair Defense Criminal Lawyers fighting for you:
- You’ll benefit from a thorough and independent investigation into the accusations of robbery.
- Our law firm will work closely with respected specialists and experts throughout the criminal proceedings.
- We’ll work to get the robbery charges against you reduced to lesser charges or dismissed entirely.
- Attorney Peter Blair will challenge evidence, dispute facts, and work to undermine the state’s case at every turn.
Make Blair Defense Criminal Lawyers your first call. We’re here to fight for you and get the best possible outcome in your San Diego County criminal robbery case.
What is Robbery?
Robbery is a theft offense in the state of California. However, it’s different from other theft crimes because it requires the use of force, fear, or intimidation to accomplish the crime.
You can face criminal robbery charges under Penal Code 211 PC.
Elements of Robbery in California
In order to be convicted of robbery, the state will have to prove each element of the crime:
- You took the personal property of another person
- Directly from that person or his immediate presence
- You took the property against that person’s will (without consent)
- You used force or fear to accomplish the theft, and
- You intended to take the property permanently or deprive the owner of its use for an extended period of time
Here’s an in-depth breakdown of some of the elements of robbery.
Taking Property and Moving With It
You have to take possession of property from another person to commit a robbery. “Taking” means that you gain possession of something and move some distance with it. It doesn’t matter if you get 10 feet away or a mile – all that’s required is movement away from its rightful owner.
Note you don’t have to physically touch the property to take it. Having control over it in some way is enough. So, you could potentially face robbery charges for hiring another person to take and move property through the use of fear.
Property must be taken from the person’s immediate presence. This can mean that it’s taken directly from their physical possession. Alternatively, it could mean that the property is nearby, and the person could maintain control over it if not threatened or intimidated.
How close is close enough to be considered an immediate presence? There’s no set standard. It could be as little as a few inches or up to dozens of feet away. One court even found that property 80 feet from a victim could be considered within their “immediate presence.”
You cannot be convicted of robbery if you have the alleged victim’s consent to take property. The theft must be committed against a person’s will and without their permission.
Force or Fear
The element that distinguishes robbery from most other theft crimes is “fear.” The theft must be “accomplished by means of force or fear.”
Force or fear can be used to accomplish one of two things:
- To physically take or remove the property from the person’s possession, or
- To prevent the person from resisting.
What does it mean to use force or fear? It’s subjective. It could involve using a deadly weapon or implying that you have one. Alternatively, it could involve physically restraining a person and threatening them or their families.
Ultimately, the victim must have actually been afraid. Circumstantial evidence may be used to support the victim’s assertion that they were, in fact, afraid.
What Are the Penalties For a Robbery Conviction in San Diego?
Robbery can be a first-degree felony or second-degree felony in California.
Robbery is typically charged as a second-degree felony.
Potential criminal consequences include:
- $10,000 in fines
- Formal probation
- Restitution to victims for the amount of the theft
- 2, 3, or 5 years in state prison
When a robbery involves aggravating factors, charges may be elevated to felony robbery in the first degree.
First Degree Robbery
Robbery is a first-degree felony offense when:
- The victim had recently withdrawn cash from an ATM;
- The victim is a passenger on or the driver of public transportation; or
- The robbery is committed in an inhabited building, like a house or apartment complex.
Consequences for first-degree felony robbery convictions can include:
- $10,000 in fines
- Formal probation
- Up to 9 years in a California state prison
Criminal penalties are just one consequence of a robbery conviction in San Diego. Collateral consequences will also be a reality if you’re found guilty by the court.
Collateral Consequences of a Robbery Conviction
Collateral consequences aren’t handed down by a judge or jury. Instead, they’re things that can happen as a result of a robbery conviction.
They’re civil and social repercussions, such as:
- Loss of professional licenses, such as medical, nursing, teaching, real estate, or insurance
- Job loss or difficulty finding employment
- Difficulty finding housing or a place to live
- Prohibitions on owning a firearm
- Difficulty obtaining financial assistance or a loan
As a convicted felon, these and other collateral consequences can follow you for a lifetime, even long after you’ve served your robbery sentence.
That’s why it’s critical to fight back aggressively from the start. Our San Diego robbery defense attorneys can help. We’ll help you stand up and assert any defense that’s available to you under the law.
What Are the Defenses For Robbery Charges in California?
Don’t forget that you are innocent until the state can prove that you are guilty of robbery. Prosecutors have a high burden of proof: beyond a reasonable doubt. A strong defense can make it even more difficult for the government to prove its case against you.
Potential defenses to a robbery charge include:
- You didn’t take property from another person or their immediate presence
- The property wasn’t moved in any significant way
- The person consented to the taking
- You did not use force or intimidation to accomplish the theft
- There’s no evidence that the victim was, in fact, afraid
- Affirmative defenses, such as acting under duress
- False accusations
It will also be important to raise any constitutional issues. For instance, if your arrest was unlawful, then the entire case against you could be thrown out.
Similarly, if evidence of the robbery was obtained illegally or has been tainted, like through an unlawful search and seizure, your attorney can ask the court to throw it out.
Proof that your constitutional rights have been violated can be incredibly helpful to your defense. The state may be forced to negotiate a plea for reduced charges and sentencing, or better yet, drop the charges entirely. Our San Diego criminal defense attorneys will be there to raise every defense on your behalf.
Contact an Experienced San Diego Robbery Lawyer For a Free Consultation
Were you recently arrested on suspicion of robbery in San Diego, CA? State prosecutors will begin to put together a case against you immediately. Don’t give them an advantage. Call Blair Defense Criminal Lawyers and get an experienced San Diego robbery lawyer to represent you in court today.
Peter Blair is respected by prosecutors, judges, and courts throughout Southern California. His reputation for being a fierce and successful advocate for his clients is well known. He understands that the stakes are incredibly high and that your future is on the line. Let him fight to get the best possible outcome in your criminal robbery case.
Felonies are serious matters. Put ten years of experience in your corner. Contact our San Diego law firm to begin strategizing your defense today. Our legal team is standing by to take your call and provide guidance when you need us most.
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