Have You Been Arrested?
Convictions for burglary,
theft carry hefty penalties. A typical
robbery is punishable as a second-degree
felony and could land you a 20 year
prison sentence. ' However, if serious bodily injury occurred during the
robbery, you could be looking at a first-degree
felony and a minimum of five years in
In your day to day life you probably tend to use the terms 'robbery', '
theft', and 'burglary' interchangeably without regard to the legal
implications of each word. Everyone knows that those terms are all used
synonymously when talking about someone taking something illegally. However,
in regard to the United States legal system, there's a difference
between robbery, theft, and burglary. Each is a distinct crime that will
carry its own associated punishment.
Theft is legally defined as the stealing of property from someone without
any threat of physical violence. Also note that larceny is the same thing
as theft. Think of examples like shoplifting or writing a bad check. As
long as you intend to permanently keep what you take, it's theft.
In the state of Texas, the type of charge you receive is based on the
value of the items that were stolen. Items of smaller value will get a
lesser charge associated with them. For example, a theft of an item worth
less than $50 will result in a Class C misdemeanor and a fine not to exceed
$500. A theft of an item worth over $200,000, though, can result in a
first-degree felony charge and up to 99 years in prison. The following
is a range of item values and the criminal charges associated with those
Less than $50 Class C misdemeanor
$50 – $500 Class B misdemeanor
$500 – $1,500 Class A misdemeanor
$1,500 ' $20,000 State jail felony
$20,000 – $100,000 Third-degree felony
$100,000 – $200,000 Second-degree felony
$200,00 or more First-degree felony
Burglary is legally defined as entering someoneâs home or business
with the intention to commit a crime. It's like theft coupled with
illegal entry into a building. It's different a different charge then
trespassing because a person who commits burglary shows intent to commit
a crime (that doesn't necessarily have to be stealing) or theft. That
means you donât even have to do anything besides entering a building
or home in order to get charged. Thatâs right: you don't even
need to steal anything to be charged with burglary. The prosecution needs
to be able to prove that the defendant had the intent to commit a crime
in order to charge you. Again, in Texas, your charge type will depend
on the type of property you enter. For example, if you enter a building
with inhabitants present, you may get a higher charge than if the building
was empty. This indicates that there was a greater danger for the people
inside the property while it was being burgled. In some states, simply
entering during daylight hours is enough to get a higher charge. Entering
a habitation will result in a second-degree felony charge that is punishable
by up to 20 years in prison.
Robbery is legally defined as the stealing of property by either physical
force or the threat of physical force. If the law worked like a math problem,
Theft + Physical Violence = Robbery, very simply put. As long as there
is a threat of violence, though, itâs robbery. ' This means
that even if you didn't lay a finger on another person, you can still
be charged. An example of this would be mugging someone in the street
or holding up a convenience store. ' Note that without a deadly weapon
is a second-degree felony, but if a gun or other deadly weapon is involved,
your charge will be bumped up to first-degree felony as an aggravated
robbery. An element of robbery that can set it apart from burglary is
the implication of a threat when a person knows that you are in their
house. Under the burglary charge, unless someone is aware that you are
inside their home, you are just a burglar. When they know youâre
there, the immediate danger they feel in your presence can make you a
robber. Consider another angle: purse snatching, for example. If the victim
is confronted by the robber, itâs robbery. If the victim isnât
âheld upâ but has her purse stolen in a 'run-by',
Lifetime of Repercussions
Even after you serve your sentence, a felony on your record can haunt you
for the rest of your life. Criminal charges on your record can keep you
from be able to find stable employment or even a landlord who will rent
you an apartment. You could even have trouble applying for a loan or going
back to school. Your criminal charge will indicate an increased liability
for those people, which can get in the way of a future down the right
path. Now, this is where the help of an experienced
criminal defense attorney comes in.
Get Solid Legal Representation
If you've been arrested and charged with robbery or theft, you need
legal representation you can count on. At Carroll Troberman,
PLLC, we care about our clients and their concerns.
Blair Carroll is an aggressive criminal defense attorney who has practiced in courts
all over the state. He is a member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers
Association and knows the intricacies of these types of cases.
Meredith "Shelly" Troberman worked for the Travis County Attorney's office as a prosecutor before
starting her own criminal defense practice in Austin. She knows the ins-and-outs
of the Travis County court system and how to defend her clients against
Austin's most aggressive prosecutors.
Contact Carroll Troberman, PLLC Today
When you've been charged with a burglary, theft or robbery, you need
the help of a strong Austin criminal defense attorney.
Contact Carroll Troberman, PLLC today to set up a free and confidential consultation.