If you are charged with Armed Robbery / Robbery Armed in Livonia, Michigan, you need the help of an experienced Livonia criminal defense attorney. I can provide you with nearly 20 years of experience and a willingness to fight and take cases to trial.
Armed Robbery is a class A felony that carries up to life in prison. If you are arrested and charged with Armed Robbery / Robbery Armed, your first court appearance will be an arraignment in the 16th District Court in Livonia, Michigan. Learn more about an arraignment now. At the arraignment, your case will be scheduled for a probable cause conference and a preliminary examination. Bond will also be addressed at the arraignment. The probable cause conference must be scheduled within 7 to 14 days of the arraignment with the preliminary examination scheduled within 5 to 7 days after the probable cause conference.
Following the preliminary examination, further proceedings are held in the Wayne County Circuit Court at the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice in downtown Detroit. If there is virtually any evidence supporting the prosecutor's case, it is extremely likely that the matter will be bound over in the district court. Nonetheless, I almost always challenge cases at the preliminary examination because it is the best opportunity that the defense is presented for challenging the evidence and developing the facts that will support defenses in the circuit court. DO NOT WAIVE THE PRELIMINARY EXAMINATION WITHOUT MAKING AN INFORMED DECISION.
The charge of Armed Robbery / Robbery Armed is detailed in the Michigan compiled laws, MCL 750.529. The provisions of MCL 750.529 state:
A person who engages in conduct proscribed under section 530 and who in the course of engaging in that conduct, possesses a dangerous weapon or an article used or fashioned in a manner to lead any person present to reasonably believe the article is a dangerous weapon, or who represents orally or otherwise that he or she is in possession of a dangerous weapon, is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for life or for any term of years. If an aggravated assault or serious injury is inflicted by any person while violating this section, the person shall be sentenced to a minimum term of imprisonment of not less than 2 years.
Armed Robbery / Robbery Armed under Michigan sentencing guidelines is scored under crimes against a person (Person). Under the guidelines, a person who is convicted of Armed Robbery with no prior record and no aggravating factors looks to the low end of the guidelines which call for up to 35 months. With no prior criminal record but horrible facts, the defendant can face 180 months. With a terrible criminal record and terrible facts, the accused could face a potential life sentence under the guidelines.
The jury instructions set forth the following elements for Armed Robbery that must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt by the prosecuting attorney:
M Crim JI 18.1 Armed Robbery
(1) The defendant is charged with the crime of armed robbery. To prove this charge, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
(2) First, the defendant [used force or violence against / assaulted / put in fear] [state complainant's name].
(3) Second, the defendant did so while [he / she] was in the course of committing a larceny. A larceny is the taking and movement of someone else's property or money with the intent to take it away from that person permanently. In the course of committing a larceny includes acts that occur in an attempt to commit the larceny, or during the commission of the larceny, or in flight or attempted flight after the commission of the larceny, or in an attempt to retain possession of the property or money.
(4) Third, [state complainant's name] was present while defendant was in the course of committing the larceny.
(5) Fourth, that while in the course of committing the larceny, the defendant:
[Choose one or more of the following as warranted by the charge and proofs:]
(a) possessed a weapon designed to be dangerous and capable of causing death or serious injury; [or]
(b) possessed any other object capable of causing death or serious injury that the defendant used as a weapon; [or]
(c) possessed any [other] object used or fashioned in a manner to lead the person who was present to reasonably believe that it was a dangerous weapon; [or]
(d) represented orally or otherwise that [he / she] was in possession of a weapon.
[Add the following paragraph if appropriate:]
(6) Fifth, the defendant inflicted an aggravated assault or serious injury to another while in the course of committing the larceny.
I can't emphasize enough how important it is to focus on the jury instructions while preparing a defense to the offense of Armed Robbery / Robbery Armed. While there are a number of defenses to Armed Robbery that we can explore during a consultation, the elements contained in M Crim JI 18.1 provide a roadmap for defending the case. This is true in almost every single case, and really great defense attorneys focus early on these jury instructions.
As a cautionary note, you might be completely innocent but still face criminal charges. Even worse, you might be denied bail, forced to spend months in jail before you are vindicated. I have seen many cases where a truly innocent client is baffled, angry and scared, completely unable to understand why police and prosecutors are gunning to get a conviction. So long as probable cause is established at the preliminary examination, then the matter will be bound over for trial in the 3rd Circuit Court for the County of Wayne and further proceedings will be held in the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice in downtown Detroit. This is why it is so important that you contact an experienced Livonia criminal defense attorney to help you defend against criminal charges in the 16th District Court.