ATM robbery in California is charged as a standard robbery in most cases, which includes probation, large fines, and jail time. In this blog, we will discuss in a little more detail the elements of an ATM robbery, the use of force in an alleged crime, and the penalties and related charges.
What Are the Elements of an ATM Robbery Crime?
In California, a person commits ATM robbery when they take something of value at the ATM scene against the other person’s will without consent and in their immediate presence. These situations will often involve either force or fear to take valuable items or money, and this form of theft can even incur violence against the victim that might lead to injury or death. Note that robbery against the will and consent of the other party means the seizure of valuable items or money that can include amounts over $500.
A robbery charge involves a combination of factors with both assault and the theft of money or other valuables, but note that in an ATM robbery charge, the person allegedly robbing the other does not need to take money from the ATM itself to constitute an ATM robbery.
Use of Force
Force in robbery crimes is a broad term defined more specifically case by case to determine appropriate penalties for a conviction. Generally, force involves the use of a weapon during the robbery that can include blades, firearms, or even fists. Other forms of force can include the use of drugs, intoxicants, or similar products that can incapacitate the alleged victim. Be aware that the evidence of force likely increases the possible charges and penalties for a convicted individual.
As mentioned earlier, be aware that an individual does not need to physically harm the alleged victim for the action to be considered a robbery crime. The mere use of intimidation to acquire the valuable belongings can appear like they will inflict harm on the victim, thus constituting a robbery charge. In other words, the imminent threat of possible force that instills fear in the victim can constitute an act of using force on the person for the crime according to the law. The presence of a deadly weapon during the robbery can further increase the defendant’s penalties they will face with a conviction.
Penalties and Related Charges
The penalties for robbery are generally more severe because the crime includes the presence of harm, assault, intimidation, or traumatization against the alleged victim. The use of force or fear is necessary in a robbery charge and will normally occur because the defendant committing the crime is at the same scene as the alleged victim and taking money or valuables from them. This fear or force can leave the victim in distress, including trauma or injury needing medical attention.
When a person commits a robbery, California usually separates the degrees of penalties depending on the severity of the crime. The state calls for a combination of the following penalties:
- formal probation,
- fines up to $10,000, and
- 3-6 years in a state prison (2-5 years for second degree robbery).
Note that if there are multiple victims involved in the crime, the prison time can increase 9 or more years.
Additionally, when a person commits another crime related to ATM robbery, they can also receive additional charges related to those other crimes as well as the ATM robbery charge. The penalties generally apply based on how many alleged victims have been harmed by the robber. Common related charges include:
- battery, and
- aggravated factors that increase the charges and punishments.
Restitution may also be imposed, which requires the person to pay the victim back for any loss of money if the judge deems it necessary. The courts may charge the defendant with separate crimes or all related to the instance of robbery to compound the sentences and use just one case for all charges.
Fight Your Charge Today
If you are facing robbery charges at the scene of an ATM, contact an attorney immediately to defend your case. Whether you have been charged with sole robbery or robbery and multiple related offenses, it is important to take legal action as soon as possible. A good lawyer can help argue for mitigated charges or even a reduced charge; put knowledge and experience on your side today with our team at Corrigan Welbourn Stokke, APLC.
Contact us at Corrigan Welbourn Stokke, APLC to discuss your case with one of our attorneys.