Dunwoody Police are still on the lookout for several masked men who allegedly robbed a Target store at gunpoint.
According to reports, the men pulled up in a white SUV just before the store closed. The surveillance videos show the men as wearing masks and gloves and carrying weapons. The men forced employees to cut off all alarms and to go to the back of the store and open the safe. They zip-tied one of the employee's hands behind his back.
Fortunately, no one was hurt but an undisclosed amount of cash is gone from the store.
As a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer, I will outline the laws behind robbery and armed robbery in today's post as the men are facing some serious consequences if the reported facts are proven as true and they are caught.
Armed Robbery in Georgia
Georgia Law defines the criminal offense of armed robbery in Georgia in O.C.G.A. §16-8-41 as:
A person commits the offense of armed robbery when, with intent to commit theft, he or she takes property of another from the person or the immediate presence of another by use of an offensive weapon, or any replica, article, or device having the appearance of such weapon.
According to the law, a person convicted of the offense of armed robbery shall be punished by death or imprisonment for life or by imprisonment for not less than ten nor more than 20 years. Armed robbery is classified as a serious violent felony in Georgia. If you are found guilty, there is a mandatory ten year minimum prison sentence.
The only way to get out of the ten year mandatory sentence is to either use one of the Georgia Affirmative Defenses to prove justification for the act or use another one of the Georgia Criminal Defenses to prove actual innocence or to use the defense of lesser included offenses in Georgia.
Utilizing lesser included offenses can result in a charge of robbery instead of armed robbery.
Robbery in Georgia is defined in O.C.G.A. §16-8-40 as:
A person commits robbery when they take property from another person or the immediate presence of another person with the intent to commit theft.
A robbery conviction comes with a prison sentence for a period of one to twenty years. As you can see the minimum here is one year instead of ten.
If you or a loved one has been arrested, contact a Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney today.