What Is the Difference Between Burglary and Robbery in Virginia?

It is important to recognize the key differences between burglary and robbery in Virginia. Continue reading and reach out to our skilled Richmond criminal defense attorney to learn more.

What is burglary in Virginia?

In today’s day, burglary does not have to involve theft. If a person illegally enters a property for the purposes of committing a crime, they are committing burglary. It is important to recognize the terms “for the purposes of committing a crime.” This suggests that the crime does not have to be a major, heinous action. If an individual is entering a dwelling to do something illegal, whether that be vandalism or arson, they are committing burglary.

What are the consequences of burglary in Virginia?

The state of Virginia classifies burglary in three different ways. Virginia’s penalties for burglary are serious. They likely involve high felonies with long prison stretches and big fines.

  • Statutory Burglary: Typically considered a Class 2 or Class 3 felony, depending on the circumstances. Class 3, the lower of the two, is punishable by up to 20 years in jail and fines of up to $100,000. The higher of the two, Class 2, can be punished with life in prison and fines also up to $100,000.
  • Common-Law Burglary: This is a Class 6 felony, the lowest of Virginia’s felonies. It is punishable by up to 5 years in prison and fines of up to $2,500.
  • Burglary with a Deadly Weapon: This is a Class 2 felony. Like Statutory burglary, the accused can be sentenced to up to 20 years in prison and fines of up to $100,000.

What is robbery?

Robbery does not just mean the simple theft of an item. It does not necessarily include breaking and entering, and the victim must be present. For a robbery to occur, the alleged must actually steal property from another person. It must take place in the victim’s presence and against the victim’s will. The property is stolen through force, intimidation, or violence. It could be as simple as a playground bully balling his fist and saying, “Give me all your lunch money,” or it could be as extreme as using a shotgun to rob a bank.

What are the consequences of robbery in Virginia?

You will want to realize that robbery is considered a felony in Virginia, which means that penalties for this conviction are harsh. They typically include the following:

  • First-degree Robbery: 10 years to life in prison
  • Second-degree Robbery: 5 to 10 years in prison
  • Armed Robbery: This offense has a minimum of at least 8 years in prison, depending on the case. The robbery could be a second-degree offense, which is a minimum of 5 years. If the alleged robber was armed at the time, an extra 3 years are added to the sentence, making the entire sentence 8 years.

Contact Our Firm

If you live in Virginia and have been charged with a crime, the time to speak with an experienced Richmond criminal defense attorney is now. Led by Attorney James A. Bullard Jr., our firm has fought on behalf of clients facing serious legal penalties for decades. We handle various criminal and traffic cases, including reckless driving tickets, DUIs, violent crimes, drug crimes, and so much more. Contact James A. Bullard Jr. P.C. today so we can begin formulating a comprehensive defense on your behalf.

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