Facing a Robbery Charge in NC? Here is what you need to know:

Court Room

Being accused of robbery, either Common Law Robbery or Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon, is an incredibly difficult process. Both are serious violent felonies, both can carry lengthy prison sentences, and both can be difficult to defend against. People can make false accusations of robbery for all kinds of reasons: a transaction gone wrong, unauthorized use of property, mistaken identity, or just to make someone else’s life more difficult. If you or someone you know has been accused of robbery, here are some basics to know.

Bond Conditions

People charged with robbery can often face bond amounts of $25,000 to $50,000 per charge. Each robbery charge signifies a different person who was allegedly robbed by the accuse. If a group of people or different incidents are involved, the bond total can rise very quickly. Even for Common Law Robbery, the bond can still often rise to $10,000 to $15,000. Additionally, people charged with these crimes almost always have electronic monitoring conditions imposed by the court. That means keeping the monitor charged and abiding by a strict curfew from 6pm-6am. Many times, robbery cases are indicted and moved to Superior Court for prosecution before the accused even sets foot in court for their scheduled appearance. The first hurdle many people need to navigate is how to schedule and receive a reduction in bond. Judges will not usually unsecure robbery charges and Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon is not eligible for the pretrial release program. Someone charged with robbery must usually be able to pay a cash bond of some amount. There is only one opportunity to be heard on bond in Superior Court. That means you will need to hire a lawyer who is experienced enough to get the best result possible for that hearing.

Types of Robbery

There are two types of robbery in North Carolina: Common Law Robbery and Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon. Common Law Robbery is the taking of property from another without their permission by force or by threat of force with the intent to permanently deprive them of that property. Common Law Robbery is a Class G felony, which means that a conviction cannot be expunged, and even a first-time offender can be sentenced to more than a year in prison. Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon is defined as the taking of property from another with the intent to permanently deprive them of that property by the use of a dangerous weapon that places the victim in fear of harm. Traditionally, that dangerous weapon is a gun or knife, but people can be charged for using any object that could be considered dangerous like scissors or even a screwdriver. Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon is punished as a Class D felony, one of the most serious crimes. Any conviction for Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon involves prison time unless there are extraordinarily rare circumstances. The stakes for those types of robberies are often dire. Many people charged with robbery are first time offenders who are still facing 4-to-5-year prison sentences. You will need to hire a lawyer who can help you fight these charges as best as you can.


There are defenses available to people charged with robbery, but there are some common misconceptions about these charges. It would be a defense to Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon to argue that no dangerous weapon was used in the commission of the crime. For instance, if the “gun” used to take someone’s wallet was a BB gun, or a finger in a pocket pointed to look like a gun. That would reduce the charge to Common Law Robbery. However, just because the police did not find a gun, it does not mean that this reduction of the charge automatically happens. Since frequently after a robbery no firearms are ever found, if someone believes that they were threatened with a gun then the law creates a presumption where their belief of a dangerous weapon is enough to convict the accused person. That means you will need to be ready to rebut that presumption by presenting evidence of your own that no weapon was used. You will also likely need to find a reasonable explanation for why the person making these accusations decided to contact the police. Why would they point the finger towards you, and what do they have to gain from that? These are questions that your lawyer will want answers to right away.

Common defenses to robbery include mistaken identity, or that the robbery did not happen. These defenses involve gathering time sensitive evidence like collecting statements from alibi witnesses or subpoenaing video from businesses. In order to show that the state’s story is incorrect it is going to take more than just telling your side and hoping for the best, especially when there is so much on the line. You will need a lawyer who can hit the ground running and collect as much to help you as possible.

Should I hire a lawyer?

Robbery offenses are among the most serious felonies anyone can face. The outcome of these charges will change your entire life. That makes it even more crucial that you hire an attorney as soon as possible. These charges are difficult to defend against and require a lot of effort for even the most experienced attorneys. Thankfully the attorneys at Jetton and Meredith have taken Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon charges to trial… and won! While we can’t guarantee a result for everyone, you should call us today at (704) 931-5535 to see how our experienced lawyers can help you with your robbery charges.