Robbery is a violent felony. Robbery is much more serious than larceny.
The charge of robbery has these elements in Mississippi:
- To steal property from another person,
- by use of force, or
- by threats of violence.
Robbery is much more serious than a property crime. Robbery should not be confused with larceny, shoplifting, embezzlement, false pretense, or theft charges. Robbery involves the use of threats or violence to steal valuables from another. The key element that distinguishes robbery from lesser theft crimes is that robbery is the use of force or intimidation plus theft from another human being.
Examples of robbery include: purse snatching, bump and run, mugging, snatching jewelry, grabbing cash from an open register, any sudden grabbing of money or valuables, or taking anything from a person by force or intimidation. The use of force makes robbery much more serious than other forms of theft. In Mississippi, robbery is also called simple robbery and strong arm robbery, mugging, and highway robbery.
In Mississippi, crimes generally consist of two general elements, (1) the mental element of intent to commit a crime, plus (2) the physical act in furtherance of an element of the crime. Since the intent to commit a crime can be proven by the defendant’s actions, the Mississippi Supreme Court has articulated certain rules for charging robbery.
An indictment for robbery must specifically identify the victim, the property taken, and the rightful owner. The indictment must specify the act of violence and that the defendant intended to permanently deprive the owner. While intent can be inferred from the facts, the indictment must state some overt act concerning each element of the charge.
A person can be convicted of robbery even if he is not present at the crime scene. Someone who helps the perpetrator by acting as a lookout, get away driver, or otherwise aids, abets or assists with any essential element, will be charged with robbery the same as if he was present. A person who helps plan the robbery or will share in the proceeds, can be charged along with the person who did the deed. A co-conspirator can also be charged with robbery even if he was not present.
The doctrine of a lesser included offense originates in the doctrine of merger. If the prosecution can not prove all the elements of robbery, the defendant may receive the benefit of a less serious offense. The defendant has the absolute right to a jury instruction on the elements of a lesser included offense where it is supported by the evidence.
The charge of robbery can include the lesser offenses of simple assault and larceny. Depending on the value of property taken, the lesser included offense of larceny could be a felony or misdemeanor.
If you are under investigation or the police want to question you, call us immediately. The police will use aggressive questioning to get the answers they want to hear. The best Mississippi attorneys know you cannot talk your way out of a charge. Talk to a lawyer first. Call the Law Office of Rufus Alldredge at 228.863.0123. We are located at 1921 22nd Avenue in Gulfport, Mississippi close to the federal and state courts.