Dan Murphy
By: Dan Murphy

Many people confuse robbery with theft, but the two have very different legal definitions in Denver. If you are arrested for a robbery offense, you might want to know what it means. Understanding what happens in the worst-case scenario can help you prepare to avert those possibilities.

Even Colorado’s simplest form of robbery is still serious and comes with not less than two years in confinement. A Denver criminal defense attorney can explain other harsh consequences accompanying a robbery conviction and help you prepare for what is to come.

Is Robbery Punished as a Felony or Misdemeanor in Denver?

In Colorado, robbery is only punished as a felony. It is never considered a misdemeanor under any circumstances. This tells you how serious the crime is, and how important it is to fight the charges in Denver.

The simple act of taking something valuable from another person in their presence is enough to charge you with the felony of robbery. Defending oneself might not be easy, but a skilled Denver robbery lawyer can protect you and save you from the harsh consequences of the crime.

Are Robbery Convicts Locked in a Prison or Jail?

If you are pronounced guilty of the offense of robbery, you can be incarcerated for up to six years. However, you might not serve this period in jail because county jails are mostly for petty offenders sentenced to a year or less.

Robbery convicts usually spend their years in confinement in state prisons. Separation from family and friends can hurt the relationship you had before. Your professional life could also be affected, and you might struggle to rebuild it after you get out of prison in Denver. Therefore, it is best to fight the charges aggressively.

What Aggravates Robbery Penalties in Denver?

Robbery convicts can get more than six years in prison and pay more fines if aggravating factors are involved. Some of the things that can make your crime more serious include:

  • Taking controlled substances
  • Threatening or use of deadly weapons
  • Robbing a disabled person
  • Robbing an “at-risk” elder person

With aggravated circumstances, the accused person risks:

  • A mandatory four years behind bars for robbing disabled or at-risk elderly persons
  • Mandatory imprisonment of 32 years for deadly weapons
  • Mandatory 48 years in prison for controlled substances

What are the Fines for Robbery in Denver?

Both simple and aggravated robbery are charged as felonies and come with hefty fines. However, the fines’ range depends on which class of felony the offense falls under. For instance, robbery is in Class 4, aggravated robbery in Class 3, and aggravated robbery of controlled substances in Class 2.

The fines are up to:

  • $1,000,000 for aggravated robbery of controlled substances
  • $750,000 for aggravated robbery
  • $500,000 for robbery

Note that these are the upper limits, and a seasoned robbery defense attorney in Denver can advocate for the least possible fines, depending on the circumstances.

Can I Get Probation Instead of Imprisonment in a Robbery Case?

Judges have the mandate of suspending imprisonment and placing you on probation. However, it might be subject to certain conditions, such as:

  • Remaining law-abiding
  • Maintaining employment
  • Attending counseling
  • Meeting with a probation officer
  • Serving a short jail sentence

Failing to adhere to the probation requirements can result in re-imprisonment. However, note that probation is not granted to everyone. A lot of convincing is needed for a judge to consider giving a robbery convict probation in place of jail. A Denver robbery lawyer can line all the reasons you should be on probation and convince the judge.

How Does Parole Work After a Robbery Conviction?

While parole is not guaranteed in Denver, convicts can earn it with good behavior in prison. You can shave off a significant part of your sentence if you are eligible for parole. Some of the determinants for parole include:

  • The nature of your offense
  • Your criminal history
  • Earned credits

Once you have served 50% or 75% of your sentence, convicts can apply for conditional release with the Colorado State Board of Parole. And if you have earned credits for progressing with your educational goals, you might get parole on completing 25% of your sentence.

What Other Alternative Sentencing Can One Get in Denver?

Advocating for alternative sentencing is a great way to avoid prison. And luckily, Colorado uses both indeterminate and determinate sentencing structures, unlike several other states. This means that the judge can punish offenders with:

  • Payment of restitution, costs, fees, and fines
  • Restorative justice
  • Community service programs and specialized restitution
  • Home detention programs
  • Community corrections program
  • Probation
  • Incarceration

Remember, these alternatives are never granted automatically. You need a skilled legal expert to fight for you and give valid reasons showing that alternative sentencing would be ideal.

What Defenses Can Save One From Robbery Penalties?

Robbery is a grave offense that can change one’s life significantly. A good defense is imperative in fighting off the harsh penalties that could come with a conviction. Some of the applicable defenses include:

  • The alleged stolen goods were obtained in an illegal search and seizure
  • You had no intentions of using the deadly weapon in your possession
  • You had no deadly weapon
  • The goods were yours, or you had reasons to believe they were
  • You had no intentions of taking anything from the alleged victim

The most appropriate defense is formulated with knowledge of the incident’s background. Speak to a Denver robbery lawyer, and they will help you come up with an award-winning defense.

Learn Your Defense Options with the Help of a Legal Expert

The laws in Denver punish convicts of robbery severely. They can lose their freedom, pay lots of fines, and taint their criminal records. And there are many other impacts a conviction can have on your personal and family life.

A skilled criminal defense lawyer can explain everything that could be at stake and advice you on the best ways to fight off the charges. Talk to us today and we will address all your concerns.

Dan Murphy
By: Dan Murphy

Denver criminal defense lawyer Daniel M. Murphy provides clients in the Denver area with aggressive and sympathetic legal representation. He graduated from the University of Denver Law School in 1994 and worked as a public defender before starting his own practice in 1996. He has defended clients accused of the most difficult criminal and alcohol-related charges. He also serves as a Moot Court Judge for Denver-area law students who rely on his mentorship.