Did you know even the use of a toy replica of a weapon may be sufficient to convict someone of armed robbery? Yep, if you try and commit a robbery in Atlanta thinking that you are just using a “toy guy”, you will be arrested on a Atlanta Armed Robbery charge.
Under Atlanta and Georgia Laws, a robbery occurs when a person, with the intent to commit theft, takes the property of another from another or in the immediate presence of another by use of force, sudden snatching, intimidation, use of threat or coercion, or by placing a person in fear of immediate serious bodily injury to himself or another person. An item that was taken does not need to have been in actual contact with the victim’s body. The item simply needs to be under the victim’s control or responsibility and not too distant from the victim.
The Penalties can result in a 1- to 20-year sentence. Additionally, if the victim was 65 years or older, the defendant will be sentenced to between 5 and 20 years. The judge is also required to force the defendant to make restitution to any victim equal to the uncompensated portion of damages.
The more severe crime of armed robbery is committed when a person intends to commit a theft and takes property from another person or the immediate presence of another by use of an offensive weapon, or any replica, article, or device having the appearance of such a weapon. An offensive weapon is essentially anything that is likely to produce death or great bodily injury.
A conviction will result in a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years, with the possibility of up to 20 years or life in prison. If the armed robbery occurs at a pharmacy in which the person takes a controlled substance and intentionally inflicts bodily injury upon any person, a conviction will result in a sentence of at least 15 years.
Georgia also makes it a separate offense for a person to possess or use a machine-gun, sawed-off shotgun, sawed-off rifle, or a silencer-equipped firearm during the commission of a robbery. A conviction requires a sentence of 10 years which will run consecutively to any other sentences. A second offense will result in life imprisonment.
A criminal defense attorney has many options in defending allegations of a robbery or burglary. Of course, the state must prove every element of the crime as charged. There can be no conviction if the state cannot prove every element beyond a reasonable doubt. For instance, robbery requires several elements including the intent to commit theft. If there is no evidence of this intent, there generally can be no conviction.
Georgia also provides for two affirmative defenses to the crime of burglary. The first is if the defendant was authorized to be in the building or was authorized to enter the building. Any conflict in testimony between the defendant and the alleged victim is generally a question of credibility for the jury to resolve. The second affirmative defense is to argue a mistake of fact.
Many other potential defenses are available to a defendant accused of robbery or burglary. If you have been charged with one of these offenses, you need the Howard Law Group who will defend your legal rights. Our team has successfully represented clients charged with robbery and burglary and may be able to help.
Contact us for a Free Consulatation to discuss your Atlanta Armed Robbery Case