Illinois Robbery

The Law – 720 ILCS 5/18-1

A person commits robbery when he or she knowingly takes property, other than a motor vehicle, from the person or presence of another by the use of force or by threatening the imminent use of force.

Robbery differs from theft in that a conviction for robbery requires proof beyond a reasonable doubt that there was use of force or the threatened use of force. Robbery also requires that property be taken directly from another person or in the presence of another person. The State has the burden of proving every element of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. This includes that the act was done “knowingly” as well as the fact that a threat was for the “imminent” use of force.

The Sentence

CLASS 2 FELONY – 3-7 years prison
Probation Possible? – Yes

IF the victim is 60 years of age or over or is a physically handicapped person, or the robbery is committed in a school, day care center, day care home, group day care home, or part day child care facility, or place of worship.

Probation Possible – Yes.

Success Story: A mother retained our firm to defend her son on a charge of robbery. A person had accused our client of striking him while in an alley and then taking money from him that he had just gotten at a currency exchange when he cashed a check. The man had identified our client as the person who robbed him from photographs the police showed him. There were no other witnesses to the alleged crime. Our client told us he did not rob the person.

We went to the currency exchange and were able to discover that the currency exchange kept detailed records of every check cashed there. We discovered that the alleged victim did not cash a check at the currency exchange as he had told the police. That meant that he either was mistaken as to which currency exchange he had cashed his check, or that he could not have had the money on him that he told the police he had. We went to other currency exchanges in the area, and found that the alleged victim had not cashed a check there either. We investigated further and found that the alleged victim had lost his job a week before the alleged crime, but he did not want to tell his wife, so to cover the fact that he was not bringing home a paycheck, he apparently said he was robbed. In the meantime, however, our client was sitting in jail on a huge bond that neither he nor his family could pay. We demanded trial, but all that means is that our client has to be tried within 140 days – a long time to wait in jail, and he would lose his job. So with the evidence in hand, we filed a Motion to Reduce the Bond set by the court, arguing that the evidence showed that our client did not commit the crime. This strategy would allow our client to possibly get out of jail while awaiting trial. The Judge granted our Motion to Reduce Bond, and released our client on his own recognizance, without the need to post any money. Our client returned to his job. Eventually, based upon our investigation, the State dismissed all of the charges.

When we represent an individual, we leave no stone unturned in doing what it takes to get the best result possible for you.

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James A. Payonk, Jr.

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Orland Park, Illinois 60467

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