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Much is at stake if you’ve been charged with armed robbery. With a potential maximum penalty of 25 years to life in prison, it’s in your best interests to hire an experienced, competent Los Angeles armed robbery attorney. Don’t trust your future to an attorney who rarely works with armed robbery defendants. You’ll find the legal knowledge, skill and aggressiveness you need at this firm.
Defining Robbery in California
Certain elements must be present to support a charge of robbery in Los Angeles. It’s a crime that always involves at least two people, as the alleged victim must be present at the time of the theft. Typically, the defendant stands accused of taking property belonging to the alleged victim through the use of force or fear. It’s not necessary for the defendant to possess a weapon at the time of the robbery. A mere verbal threat of violence may be sufficient. Even when no weapon is used, the law considers robbery a violent offense. Accordingly, a conviction carries relatively hefty penalties. Second-degree burglary, the lesser level of offense, carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison. Those who are charged with first-degree burglary may be facing as much as six to nine years.
Armed Robbery Means Enhanced Penalties
California law considers the use of a weapon in the commission of a robbery as a separate crime. Accordingly, a person who is convicted of armed robbery in Los Angeles may be looking at additional prison time of between 10 and 25 years. An additional 10 year term will be imposed simply for possessing or brandishing a weapon during the robbery. If a firearm is discharged during the robbery, the defendant may be looking at an extra 20 years. Should the discharging of the weapon result in the injury or death of another person, then the defendant could be facing a term of 25 years to life in prison. Clearly, the state considers armed robbery to be an extremely serious offense. The prosecutor’s office pursues these charges with the utmost zealousness. That’s why anyone who is accused of armed robbery in Los Angeles needs a criminal defense attorney who is equally as serious and zealous.
Consequences Beyond Prison for California Armed Robbery
Any robbery is conviction is considered a felony. Any person with a felony on their record is bound to discover that their life is endlessly complicated by the conviction. Frequently, felons are not allowed to own or possess firearms. They lose their right to vote, and when they apply for a job it’s likely that they’ll have to disclose their criminal record to all potential employers. This can make it difficult to find a job, which makes it hard to find a place to live, pay for common necessities or make any sort of lifestyle improvements.
Moreover, robbery is classified under California’s “three strikes law.” Those who have already been convicted of prior felonies under this law may find themselves facing additional prison time. The same is true if a defendant is convicted of robbery and is later accused of other crimes. These penalties can add up quickly, and the defendant’s life will never be the same. That’s why avoiding a felony conviction is the first goal of any competent Los Angeles armed robbery attorney. To achieve that, it’s necessary to exploit any weaknesses in the prosecution’s case.
Experienced Los Angeles Armed Robbery Lawyers
It isn’t always easy to see and exploit the weaknesses in the case built by the police and the prosecutor. They work hard to project a united front, and they are determined to win a conviction at virtually any cost. Law enforcement and prosecuting attorneys may be dedicated professionals, but they are also human. They make mistakes. Sometimes they don’t act within the strict limits of the law. When these errors occur, it is the responsibility of the Los Angeles criminal defense attorney to find them and make the most of them.
A seasoned California armed robbery defense attorney conducts a thorough investigation of the defendant’s case. This includes reviewing police reports and questioning any witnesses who may have information about the incident. Criminal defense lawyers work closely with the prosecutor so they know exactly what evidence they have against the defendant. Accordingly, it’s possible for the defense attorney to find the holes in the prosecution’s case, which gives them the ability to potentially undermine the charges.
Avoiding Conviction, Minimizing Charges
The primary goal of any Los Angeles armed robbery attorney is to completely avoid conviction for their client. A lack of evidence or other problems in the prosecution’s case may make this a possibility. In cases where it’s not possible to get the charges dropped, there may still be an opportunity to have the charges reduced. This means fewer years spent in prison and a better chance at building a life afterward.
Rely on Knowledge and Experience
Our practitioners have considerable experience when it comes to representing people who are accused of committing armed robbery in Los Angeles. We believe that everyone deserves an aggressive defense regardless of the evidence against them. In fighting for the rights of our clients, we look for ways to have the charges dropped. Should this not prove feasible, we do everything in our power to get the prosecutor to accept reduced charges. With our investigative and negotiating skills, we help armed robbery defendants fight for a brighter future.