What Level Charge Are Robbery and Burglary?
Interviewer: In terms of robberies, is any level of robbery or burglary a felony, or are they charged as misdemeanors sometimes?
Adam: I’ve never seen a misdemeanor robbery, and I don’t know of any state that actually has one. They’re all going to be felonies and then there’s going to be a matter of whether it’s the regular burglary or robbery charge, or if it’s going to be the aggravated burglary or robbery.
Interviewer: For robberies and burglaries, just how severe is the felony?
Adam: The same factors come into play, whether there was a deadly ordinance, or deadly weapon. Things like that are what would make the distinction between the two.
Interviewer: With burglary, let’s say you’re using burglary tools, or if you break into a residence, you have an ax, or a crowbar. Is the prosecution going to try to say that that’s a deadly weapon even if you never come into contact with anybody?
Adam: I would say that they’re going to say it’s a deadly weapon, regardless of whether anybody is there or not because the case law’s fairly clear. It doesn’t matter whether it’s occupied at the time the act is committed. It’s a matter of whether they could have reasonably expected to find someone home. It also applies to hotels and similar buildings.
Interviewer: Do you have any particular issue in your area with rental cars, people not returning them? That ever considered a theft, or a problem in your area?
Adam: I’ve had clients a handful of times that were charged on that. We’re not near a major airport. There are not a large number of car rental locations around, but they’re usually coming through the area and that’s when they get caught. If somebody overstays the term of the rental, even though they’re still paying it, technically, the car company could charge them.
By Adam Hunt