How do robbery and theft differ?

On Behalf of Longman Jakuback

When hit with criminal charges, it makes sense to understand those charges and what they mean for your legal case. Louisiana law enforcement charged you with theft, but how does the act differ from robbery?

U.S. News & World Report breaks down the difference between the two criminal charges. Educate yourself on building a viable legal defense.


Committing theft is when you take something that belongs to another. If the item taken does not have much value, the crime becomes a misdemeanor. When a person takes something of great value, that becomes grand theft. Examples of grand theft include siphoning electrical power or stealing cable without paying for the service.

A person may commit theft without committing burglary or robbery. For instance, a person may shoplift during store hours without entering a business illegally or robbing someone, which becomes theft. Other than physical items, a person may commit theft by stealing another person’s identity or a company’s intellectual secrets.


When a person commits robbery, she or he uses violence, force or intimidation to take or attempt to take a valuable item from another person. Even if the accused fails in taking the item, she or he may still face robbery charges if a victim feels intimidated or if the accused uses force.

The two types of robbery are strong-arm robbery and armed robbery. With strong-arm robbery, a person uses physical strength to rob someone. Armed robbery involves the use of a weapon.

You deserve to understand the nature of your charges and how they differ from similar ones. When you have all the facts, you know what moves to make next.

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