A robbery charge is a type of criminal charge. When a person is charged with robbery, this means he is accused of taking something from another party in a violent manner. For example, he may use violence to steal from another person, or he may threaten another person with violence in order to take something valuable from him. In some places, a person may face such charges even if he failed to take something of value, and attempting to steal in this manner may be enough in many jurisdictions.
Often, people confuse robbery with other types of theft. For example, they may expect a burglar to face these charges, or they may consider it robbery if a radio is stolen from a car. Legally, however, there are different types of theft charges and distinct conditions that must be met in order for a person to be charged with one of them. In the case of robbery charges, violence, or the threat of it, is the deciding factor.
To understand cases in which these charges may apply, it may help to consider a case in which a person threatens to stab someone else if he does not give him money; this is considered robbery. Likewise, the same person may also face these charges if the attack is foiled and he fails to obtain whatever he was attempting to steal. Additionally, shoving a person down on the ground in order to render him unbalanced in order to take something from him is also included in this definition in most places.
Sometimes, a person may be charged with armed robbery, which usually just means he is accused of committing this crime with a weapon. Aggravated robbery, however, is usually a more serious charge. This charge means the individual is accused of using a deadly weapon, such as a gun, to commit a theft.
Interestingly, a person may face aggravated robbery charges even if he had a fake weapon. For example, if a person robs someone with a toy gun, he can still face this charge simply because it looked like a deadly weapon. Additionally, a robber who severely injures or kills another person, or even threatens to do so, may face such charges in some jurisdictions.
In many places, robbery charges are considered felonies. This means robberies are consider more serious than some other types of crimes and may carry harsher penalties. For example, a person may spend more time in jail for committing a felony than a misdemeanor, which is a less serious type of offense. Likewise, he may face higher monetary fines in some cases.