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What are the differences between robbery, burglary and theft?

On Behalf of | Aug 2, 2021 | Criminal Defense

Each year, many burglaries, robberies and thefts happen in the United States. If you’re facing charges for one of these crimes in Georgia, it’s beneficial to learn how they differ from one another. Here is a closer look at the differences between burglary, theft and robbery.

Burglary

If you’re unlawfully entering a property to commit an additional crime, you’re committing the act of burglary. In most cases, the other crime committed will be theft. However, that’s not always the case with these types of property crimes. For instance, someone breaking into a building and then kidnapping someone would be guilty of burglary.

Theft

When someone unlawfully takes property that isn’t theirs, they’re committing theft. Someone doesn’t have to enter a property unlawfully to commit this crime. Even if you didn’t use force or the threat of force to take something, you could still be guilty of theft. If what you stole was worth less than $500, you committed petty theft. Stealing items worth more than $500 in Georgia makes you guilty of grand theft.

Robbery

When you use force or make threats of force to take something that isn’t yours, you’re committing the act of robbery. Depending on the situation, it’s possible to get convicted of robbery even if you had no weapon on your person. Considering the severity of punishments for those guilty of robbery, most defendants have a criminal defense lawyer on their side to help them fight the charges or negotiate a favorable deal.

It’s understandable to confuse robbery, theft and burglary with each other. Knowing the differences between these crimes can help you learn the potential charges you might face and develop a defense strategy.

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