Michigan Criminal Law: Robbery; Unarmed Robbery

Allegations involving acts of violence of varying degrees are prevalent in the criminal justice system. Robbery, unarmed and armed, combine elements of assaultive and larcenous crimes.

Unarmed Robbery, MCL 750.530, & MCL 750.88 is a felony punishable, if convicted, “by imprisonment in the state prison not more than 15 years.” There may be other sanctions if convicted as well, such as fines, costs, restitution, or other sanctions.

With unarmed robbery, the alleged act is committed without the use, threat, or incorporation of a weapon. This lack of a weapon distinguishes this charge from Armed Robbery, MCL 750.529, & MCL 750.89.

As the Model Jury Instruction explains, in order to prove this charge beyond a reasonable doubt, the prosecutor must show the following:

(1) The defendant is charged with the crime of assault with intent to commit robbery while unarmed. To prove this charge, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

(2) First, that the defendant assaulted [name complainant] with force or violence. There are two ways to commit an assault. The defendant must either have attempted or threatened to do immediate injury to [name complainant] , and was able to do so, or the defendant must have committed an act that would cause a reasonable person to fear or apprehend an immediate battery.

(3) Second, that at the time of the assault the defendant intended to commit robbery. Robbery occurs when a person assaults someone else and takes money or property from [him / her] or in [his / her] presence, intending to take it from the person permanently. It is not necessary that the crime be completed or that the defendant have actually taken any money or property. However, there must be proof beyond a reasonable doubt that at the time of the assault the defendant intended to commit robbery.

Crim. JI. 18.4

Like armed robbery, unarmed robbery is a specific intent crime. Crim. JI. 18.4

Examples of unarmed robbery could include an individual who violently takes another person’s wallet or purse of their person without using a weapon…i.e., a violent purse snatching, among others.
This is a serious felony charge. It is a “C” grid for the purposes of sentencing; which means a significant percentage of defendants, depending on the alleged facts, will be looking at prison time if convicted of this charge. However, it is not as serious as “Armed Robbery,” which is a capitol level charge.

Our experienced trial attorneys fight hard for our Michigan clients. We represent clients statewide. For a free initial consultation, feel free to contact us at (517) 507-5077.

For information Michigan’s Armed Robbery Charge, click here.

For information on Michigan’s Breaking & Entering charge, click here.
For information on Michigan’s embezzlement charge, click here.
For information on Michigan’s charge, Home Invasion, Third Degree, click here.
For information on Michigan’s charge, Home Invasion, Second Degree, click here.
For information on Michigan’s charge, Home Invasion, First Degree, click here.
For information on Michigan’s charge, Larceny from a Building, click here.

Anyone charged, of course, is presumed innocent. The prosecutor would need to prove the elements of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt if the matter proceeded to trial. Simply because a person is charged does not mean that ultimately, they will be convicted.
If you need specific legal advice for your particular circumstances, I encourage you to privately consult with a lawyer. Circumstances may vary significantly. If you need specific legal advice, please privately consult with a lawyer.
If you are charged with an offense and cannot afford to pay for your own defense, the court may appoint you an attorney payable at the public’s expense. You have a right to counsel.