Armed robbery involves taking the property or possessions of another person by threatening the use of deadly force. It is a felony in the state of Florida and comes with very severe penalties. Armed robbery is charged as first degree robbery with a deadly weapon. You can get up to life imprisonment if you are convicted of this crime.
If you have been accused of armed robbery, your first call should be to a criminal defense attorney. You may be panicked and in fear of the consequences of you arrest. However, you must keep calm and focus on the difficulties ahead of you. If you have been arrested and taken into custody, the authorities may try to get you to confess to the crime by promising that things will go smoother for you. Do not fall for this. An arrest does not amount to a conviction. You are innocent until proven guilty, and you still have a Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate yourself.
You should exercise this right until your lawyer arrives. Once your lawyer is beside you, they will advise you on how to answer the questions put to you by police. If you are too tired or shaken up to give clear and coherent answers, then your lawyer can speak on your behalf.
Your lawyer’s next order of business will be to review and examine the evidence the police have against you. Law enforcement officers often exaggerate what they have on those they hold in custody. If your attorney discovers that the police have nothing that connects you to the victim of the crime or the scene where it took place, they can arrange for you to be released.
However, if police and prosecutors do have such evidence against you, then your case will move forward and you will need to prepare your defense. William Hanlon criminal lawyer in Tampa can help you put together a robust and effective legal defense. Your lawyer will sit down with you and have you recall all that happened after the police first contacted you. If you are connected to the victim in some way, you will get to explain how to your lawyer.
Your arrest and prosecution may be the result of an overzealous investigation. If you happen to live in a neighborhood in which there have been a string of armed robberies or a surge in other violent crimes, city officials may have decided to dedicate extra resources to the area and even set up a special anti-crime task force. These types of units are under pressure to get immediate results; and you may have been swept up in one of the many operations they have carried out.
Your arrest may also owe to mistaken identity. Most armed robberies occur at night. If the authorities rely on eyewitness accounts of the robbery, it is quite easy for you to be mistaken for the person who actually committed the crime—especially if you are of the same race, build, age, and height.
The criminal lawyer you hire is specialized in the field. They will be able to gather the facts, employ forensic evidence, and bring the relevant bits of law to bear on your case. Your lawyer will arrange for their own professional investigators to examine the scene, interview the victim, and speak to any witnesses. Your lawyer will also have independent experts analyze and evaluate any trace evidence the police may have which they believe proves you committed the crime. Both of these actions can lead to conclusions that differ considerably from those reached by the prosecution. They can help your lawyer make a strong case for your acquittal.