Robbery charges tend to increase in Chicago and the surrounding communities around the holidays. There are several reasons this happens – but one thing’s for sure: If you pick up robbery charges during the holidays, you may need to talk to a robbery defense attorney in Chicago.
Robbery Charges During the Holidays
Robbery is a serious crime in Illinois, and it’s one that could land you in prison. Illinois law says, “A person commits robbery when he or she knowingly takes property, except a motor vehicle covered by Section 18-3 or 18-4, from the person or presence of another by the use of force or by threatening the imminent use of force.”
Related: Felony defense in Chicago
Penalties for Robbery Convictions in Illinois
When the state charges you with robbery, it’s either a Class 2 or Class 1 felony. It depends on the circumstances of your offense. If you force someone to give you their belongings without a weapon, you’re likely being charged with a Class 2 felony. If the alleged victim is 60 or older, though, or it’s someone with a physical disability, it becomes a Class 1 felony. Additionally, robbery is a Class 1 felony if it occurs in a school, daycare center or daycare home, a childcare facility or a place of worship. Aggravated robbery is also a Class 1 felony.
A Class 2 felony could send you to prison for 3 to 7 years; a Class 1 felony puts you behind bars for 4 to 15 years.
Armed robbery is another story – and it’s a Class X felony, which carries a possible prison sentence of 6 to 30 years. Nearly anything you could use as a weapon counts, too – whether you have a knife “on or about” your person (that means you don’t have to have it actually on you at the time of the offense) or you’re carrying a machine gun.
It’s important to note that if you’re convicted of armed robbery with a firearm – any firearm – the law says “15 years shall be added to the term of imprisonment imposed by the court.” That means if the judge was going to give you a 6-year sentence in prison, because you had a gun, that sentence becomes a 21-year term.
Even worse, if you discharged your firearm during the commission of the crime, the court will add 20 years to your sentence. And if someone was harmed, killed, disabled or disfigured, the court can add more than 25 additional years to your sentence. That means you could spend the rest of your life in prison.
What to Do if You’re Accused of Robbery During the Holidays (or Any Other Time)
If you’re accused of robbery, you’re facing some serious prison time – and you have the right to obtain legal counsel. You should get in touch with an attorney to learn about your rights and find out if there’s any way to defend against the charges you’re facing.
Call us at 847-920-4540 right now for a completely free consultation with an experienced robbery defense lawyer in Illinois. We’ll answer your questions and give you the legal advice you need.