Understanding Robbery with a Weapon in Florida with an Expert Attorney
What are the Elements of Robbery with a Weapon in Florida?
As per Section 812.13 of the Florida Statutes, the elements of Robbery with a Weapon in Florida are defined by the intentional taking of money or other property from another person using force, violence, assault, or threats, while carrying a non-deadly weapon during the act. Note the distinction: if the weapon is a firearm or another deadly weapon, the charge escalates to Robbery with a Firearm or Deadly Weapon, attracting more severe penalties.
What are the Penalties for Robbery with a Weapon in Florida?
Robbery with a Weapon is a first-degree felony in Florida, punishable by up to 30 years of prison or probation, and a $10,000 fine. (Note that while Robbery with a Firearm or Deadly Weapon is a first-degree felony as well, the maximum sentence for that charge is imprisonment for life instead of 30 years.)
|Type of Felony
|Robbery with a Weapon
|Up to 30 years of prison or probation, and a $10,000 fine
|Robbery with a Firearm or Deadly Weapon
The charge carries a severity level of 8 (or 74 points) under the Criminal Punishment Code; assuming there are no aggravating circumstances (such as prior criminal convictions), this translates to a minimum permissible sentence of 34.5 months in prison. The judge cannot impose a lesser sentence unless special circumstances exist for what is called a downward departure from the minimum sentence.
How Can Leppard Law Help Fight a Charge of Robbery with a Weapon in Florida?
Claim of Right
Some courts have held that you cannot be convicted of robbery if you have a good-faith belief that you are the proper owner of the property or are entitled to immediate possession of it. In such a case, there is no criminal intent because you are simply trying to take back what you believe to be yours, so you cannot be found guilty. (reversing robbery conviction where defendant took a cell phone that he believed to belong to him).
Robbery is not committed unless you used force, threats, or the like to take the property in question. Therefore, there is no robbery if you use threats or force against someone for a different purpose, and then take the property as an afterthought.
Motion to Suppress
A motion to suppress is a request made by a defendant for the court to exclude certain evidence from trial. The motion will usually be granted if the evidence was obtained in a manner that violated the defendant’s constitutional rights. For instance, if the police conducted an illegal search to find the weapon, a successful motion to suppress can exclude this from the trial, weakening the prosecution’s case.
An alibi defense involves demonstrating that you were somewhere else when the alleged crime occurred. This defense requires substantial evidence, such as surveillance footage, witness testimonies, or GPS data, which places you away from the scene of the crime at the relevant time.
Other Potential Defenses
Our defense strategies are not limited to the above. Here at Leppard Law, we employ a range of strategies to challenge the State’s case and uphold your innocence. Some of these include:
- Moving to throw out evidence that was obtained in violation of your constitutional rights.
- Presenting evidence to show that there is no proof supporting the charge.
- Questioning the credibility of the prosecution’s witnesses.
- Arguing that the incident was a result of mistaken identity or false accusation.
Frequently Asked Questions
What qualifies as a weapon in a robbery charge in Florida?
In Florida, a weapon can be any object used or threatened to be used in a manner likely to cause great bodily harm or death. This includes but is not limited to knives, clubs, or even bottles.
What’s the difference between robbery and armed robbery in Florida?
In Florida, robbery is the intentional and unlawful taking of property from another person, using force, violence, or threats. Armed robbery is a more serious offense, which involves the use of a weapon during the commission of the robbery.
How does Florida law classify a ‘deadly weapon’?
A deadly weapon is any instrument which, when used in the ordinary manner contemplated by its design and construction, will or is likely to cause death or great bodily harm. This typically includes firearms, knives, or other similar items.
Can the charge of robbery with a weapon be reduced?
Yes, it’s possible. An experienced criminal defense attorney can challenge the prosecution’s case, potentially leading to reduced charges, a lesser sentence, or even a complete dismissal of charges.
Does a past criminal record impact the severity of the punishment for robbery with a weapon?
Yes, a previous criminal record, especially if it includes similar charges, can significantly increase the severity of the sentence in Florida.
Our team at Leppard Law: Florida DUI Lawyers & Criminal Defense Attorneys PLLC provides thorough, attentive, and aggressive defense representation to our clients facing various types of criminal law matters. If you have been arrested for robbery with a weapon, we defend the rights and freedom of people facing all types of criminal cases. We are committed to providing legal representation to all members of our community.
Call us at 407-476-4111 to learn more. We offer free consultations and a variety of payment plans, including credit cards, and flexible payment options.