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Robbery may bring to mind the image of a masked stranger violently taking a person’s property, but that’s not always the case. Sometimes the charge is a result of a dispute between two parties over an item, but in any situation, a conviction carries serious consequences.

You may be feeling overwhelmed at the possibility of facing a felony charge, but you do not have to take on your defense alone. The help of an experienced criminal defense attorney is invaluable in this situation. The criminal justice process is daunting and confusing, but with a lawyer at your side, you can aggressively fight to defend your future.

Attorney for Robbery Defense in Des Moines, Iowa

At McCarthy & Hamrock, P.C., we are determined to fight tirelessly for every client. We know that your future is on the line, and we know exactly what you’re up against. With almost 50 years of combined legal experience, Timothy McCarthy II and Aaron Hamrock are ready to take on your challenging situation and seek out a positive resolution for you.

Call (515) 279-9700 today to schedule your free consultation appointment. We can analyze the details of your situation and help you chose the best way to proceed. Minimize your stress by trusting our experienced legal team to use their knowledge of the system to fight on your behalf.

Definition of Robbery in Iowa

Iowa Statute 711.1 defines the crime of robbery as having committed certain acts to facilitate an intent of theft, including:

  • Committing assault;
  • Threatening another person with serious injury; or
  • Threatening a person with any forcible felony.

The law also outlines that it is not necessary for the theft to have actually occurred for a charge of robbery to apply. In this way, a person may threaten a person to give up their belongings, be interrupted in the act and still have committed a robbery.

In addition, a felony conviction is added to an offender’s record. This can have a serious impact on employment, education, and housing opportunities, especially since most employers require that a felony conviction be disclosed to them.

Robbery in the First Degree

A robbery of the first degree has been committed if the offender inflicts or intends to inflict serious injury to the victim during the robbery, or if the offender was armed with a dangerous weapon. A first degree robbery is considered a class B felony and is punishable by up to 25 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

Previously, felonious robbery was also classified as a “forcible felony” under Iowa Code section 702.11, which under Iowa Code section 907.3 prohibits a defendant from receiving a suspended or deferred sentence or deferred judgment.

Robbery in the Second Degree

A person convicted of robbery in the second degree that occurs on or after July 1, 2016, will serve between 50 and 70 percent of a 10-year class “C” felony sentence. In determining when the person first becomes eligible for parole or work release within the parameters of 50 and 70 percent of the 10-year sentence, the sentencing court shall base its determination upon all pertinent information including the person’s criminal record, a validated risk assessment, and the negative impact the offense has had on the victim or other persons.

Previously in Iowa, when a person was sentenced to confinement for robbery in the second degree he was required to serve at least 70 percent of the 10-year maximum class “C” felony sentence prior to becoming eligible for parole or work release.

A robbery can be classified as a first-degree robbery or a second-degree robbery based on the acts performed during the offense, with the consequences varying in severity.

Any other robbery is considered a second-degree robbery. This offense is a Class C felony, which carries a potential penalty of up to 10 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.

Robbery in the Third Degree

A person commits robbery in the third degree if while perpetrating the robbery the person commits a simple misdemeanor assault in violation of Iowa Code section 708.2(6). The Act classifies robbery in the third degree as an aggravated misdemeanor.

Under the same set of facts and circumstances under prior law, a person would commit a robbery in the second degree in violation of Iowa Code section 711.3 and the offense would be classified as a class “C” felony 70 percent sentence under Iowa Code section 902.12 and would be a forcible felony under Iowa Code section 702.11.

The Difference Between Robbery and Burglary

The crime of robbery is very different from the crime of burglary. In Iowa, a burglary is an unlawful entry into a structure to commit a felony or theft. The offense includes the unlawful entry with intent to commit a larceny or felony therein and breaking and entering with intent to commit a larceny. Other closely related offenses can including housebreaking and safe-cracking. On the other hand, robbery includes a taking by force or with the threat of violence.

Hiring a Lawyer for Robbery Charges in Iowa

With a felony charge on the line, you need to ensure that your attorney can handle your situation. Our experienced lawyers have represented clients in similar situations across Iowa, including in cities such as Des Moines, Ankeny, and West Des Moines.

Our attorneys are familiar with fighting allegations involving crimes of violence in Des Moines, Iowa. To start protecting your future today, call (515) 279-9700 to schedule your free consultation.