Burglary vs. Robbery
“I was robbed!” Imagine coming home and discovering that someone broke into your house and stole from you. You’d likely immediately call the police to say, “I’ve been robbed.” Technically, you’d be wrong. The correct statement to police would be, “I’m a victim of a burglary.” Robbery and burglary both have the same goal, but they are different in many ways. These two crimes are often confused with one another because of how similar their definitions sound! Here are the ways to distinguish between burglary vs. robbery.
What Is Robbery?
Robbery is a crime that occurs when an individual uses force or fear to take property from someone else. When someone takes something from you by force or threats, it’s robbery. It can happen in a public place, such as on the street, at work, or your home. When someone robs you, they usually use some sort of weapon like a gun or knife so that they feel confident that you will hand over your property.
The statutory definition of robbery is:
- A person commits robbery if:
- the person unlawfully and intentionally takes or attempts to take personal property in the possession of another from his person, or immediate presence, against his will, by means of force or fear, and with a purpose or intent to deprive the person permanently or temporarily of the personal property; or
- the person intentionally or knowingly uses force or fear of immediate force against another in the course of committing a theft or wrongful appropriation.
- See Utah Code 76-6-301.
A robbery is a second-degree felony punishable by 1-15 years in prison. If the suspect uses a weapon, the charge would be an aggravated robbery as a first-degree felony, punishable by 5 years to life in prison.
What Is Burglary?
Burglary is when someone enters your premises unlawfully with the intent to commit a crime. Burglary only happens when someone enters your house without permission and with intent to commit a crime. A burglar can steal your property, destroy your property, or even just sleep in your bed. All those scenarios constitute burglary.
The statutory definition of burglary is:
- An actor is guilty of burglary who enters or remains unlawfully in a building or any portion of a building with intent to commit:
- any felony;
- assault on any person;
- lewdness, a violation of Section 76-9-702;
- sexual battery, a violation of Section 76-9-702.1;
- lewdness involving a child, in violation of Section 76-9-702.5; or
- voyeurism under Section 76-9-702.7.
Burglary is a third degree felony unless it was committed in a dwelling, in which event it is a second degree felony.
Have You Been Charged with Burglary or Robbery?
Call us to consult with an experienced defense attorney at Conyers & Nix today!