Robbery is a serious felony offense in Virginia. A robbery conviction can result in a significant prison sentence, a large fine, and a permanent criminal record. Fortunately, you may have defenses to the robbery charges you face. However, you need the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney to identify the defenses that apply to your case and to help you achieve the best outcome in your individual situation.
Robbery in Virginia
Virginia had one penalty for robbery before the law changed on July 1, 2021. Anyone convicted of taking property or money through the use of force or threat of force could be sentenced to five years to life in prison.
Today, all robberies are still felonies in Virginia. However, not all robberies have the same potential sentence. Instead, Virginia Code § 18.2-58 creates four types of robberies. According to state law, any person who:
- Commits robbery and causes serious bodily injury to or the death of any other person is guilty of a Class 2 felony. A Class 2 felony carries a potential sentence of 20 years to life in prison and a potential fine of up to $100,000.
- Commits robbery by using or displaying a firearm in a threatening manner is guilty of a Class 3 felony. People convicted of a Class 3 felony could serve five to 20 years in prison and a fine not exceeding $100,000.
- Commits robbery by using physical force not resulting in serious bodily injury or by using or displaying a deadly weapon other than a firearm in a threatening manner is guilty of a Class 5 felony. Class 5 felonies carry potential sentences of one to ten years in prison and a fine of up to $2,500.
- Commits robbery by using threat or intimidation or any other means not involving a deadly weapon is guilty of a Class 6 felony. Class 6 felonies are the least serious felony charges and have a potential sentence of one to five years in prison and a fine of up $2,500.
The robbery statute does not require proof that the victim of a robbery is the actual owner of the property at issue. The person just needs to be in possession of the property. A business can also be the victim of a robbery crime.
Carjacking: Another Serious Felony Offense
Carjacking is a very serious theft-related felony in Virginia involving the theft of a motor vehicle. Under Virginia Code § 18.2-58.1, carjacking is:
- The intentional seizure or seizure of control of a motor vehicle of another person
- With the intent to permanently or temporarily deprive the person of possession or control of the vehicle
- By means of partial strangulation, suffocation, striking, beating, or by other violence to the person, or by assault or otherwise putting a person in fear of serious bodily harm, or by the threat or presenting of firearms or another deadly weapon
People convicted of carjacking in Virginia face life in prison or a prison term of not less than 15 years.
Contact Our Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney for Help
Are you facing robbery or carjacking charges in Virginia? Given the possibility of being sentenced to a lengthy prison sentence or prison for the rest of your life, you need the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney. An experienced attorney may be able to build a strong defense to the charges you face.
Our experienced legal team has years of experience fighting for the rights of individuals charged with robbery and other serious offenses in Virginia. We will aggressively fight for your rights and are not afraid to take criminal cases to trial when it is in our client’s best interests. Now is the time to protect your rights. To learn more about what you can expect in your criminal case and how we can help, call our office or start an online chat to schedule your free consultation today.