In California, robbery is a serious charge met with jail time, fines, probation, a permanent criminal record, and more. If you are charged with robbery, work with a seasoned criminal defense lawyer to ensure a strong case. Here are four potential defenses to robbery and next steps to take to protect your rights and your future.
In some cases, a defendant is forced or persuaded to commit a robbery under duress. If you or your family are threatened with bodily injury or death by someone who wanted you to commit the robbery, you can argue that the robbery was committed under duress. This is a difficult defense, however, since proof of duress is often hard to find.
In order to prove robbery, the prosecution must prove that you had the intent to commit the crime. If you were intoxicated — voluntarily or otherwise — you may not necessarily be legally held to your actions. This is because you weren’t entirely of sound mind. Blood or breath tests after an arrest can prove that you were too intoxicated to truly know what you were doing. However, this defense will only work to have the charges against you reduced and not eliminated.
Like robbery committed under duress, entrapment is a difficult defense. It could be proven under the right circumstances. In order for this defense to be successful, you must prove that the person who was robbed put events into motion that forced the defendant to commit the robbery for the sole purpose of having the defendant criminally charged.
By far the most frequently used defense against robbery is actual innocence or mistaken identity. You may have a receipt or a witness testimony that functions as an alibi, showing you were in a different place at the time the robbery took place. In fact, if the robber was wearing a mask of any kind, it may be possible to argue that it wasn’t you who actually committed the crime.
If you’re facing charges of robbery, don’t take them lightly. It’s time to get help from a seasoned California criminal defense attorney. Contact the Law Offices of Donald J. Matson today for a consultation by calling (626) 600-3437.