Facing Robbery Charges in Illinois? Know Your Defenses and Possible Sentences
Robbery is a serious criminal offense in Illinois, punishable by heavy fines and imprisonment. If you have been charged with robbery, it is essential to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you navigate the legal system and protect your rights.
What is Robbery in Illinois?
Robbery is a theft crime that involves the use of force or intimidation to take another person's property. According to Illinois law, a person commits robbery when they knowingly take property from another person by the use of force or the threat of imminent use of force.
In Illinois, robbery is classified as a Class 2 felony, punishable by three to seven years in prison and fines of up to $25,000. If a firearm was used during the commission of the robbery, the offense is elevated to aggravated robbery, which is a Class 1 felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
Defenses to Robbery Charges in Illinois
If you have been charged with robbery in Illinois, there are several defenses that a skilled criminal defense attorney may use to protect your rights and help you avoid conviction.
- Lack of Intent: One of the most common defenses to robbery charges is to argue that the defendant did not have the intent to commit the crime. For example, if the defendant took the property by mistake or believed that they had the legal right to take it, they may not have had the necessary intent to be convicted of robbery.
- Mistaken Identity: Another common defense to robbery charges is to argue that the defendant was misidentified as the perpetrator. This defense may be particularly effective if the victim did not get a clear look at the perpetrator, or if there is other evidence that suggests that the defendant was not at the scene of the crime.
- Coercion or Duress: If the defendant was coerced or threatened into committing the robbery by someone else, they may be able to use the defense of coercion or duress. This defense requires showing that the defendant acted under extreme duress or fear for their safety, and that they had no other option but to commit the robbery.
Possible Sentences for Robbery Convictions
The penalties for a robbery conviction in Illinois can be severe. If you are convicted of robbery, you may face:
- A Class 2 felony: three to seven years in prison and fines of up to $25,000
- A Class 1 felony (aggravated robbery): four to 15 years in prison and fines of up to $25,000
In addition to imprisonment and fines, a robbery conviction can have a significant impact on your life, including:
- Difficulty finding employment
- Difficulty obtaining housing
- Loss of professional licenses
- Loss of the right to vote or own a firearm
If you are facing robbery charges in Illinois, it is crucial to work with an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you understand your options and protect your rights. With the right legal representation, you may be able to avoid a conviction or receive a reduced sentence that allows you to move on with your life.