The idea of "cops and robbers" is ubiquitous in our society. Whether we’re talking about a movie, video game, comic book, or child’s game of tag, certain images comes to mind when we think of a "bank robber." But make no mistake about it, robbery is not child’s play, especially in the state of Maryland. In fact, robbery and armed robbery can land you in prison for a very long time.
Elements of Robbery in Maryland
For a robbery to take place under Maryland law, the defendant must intentionally take the property or services possessed by another person through the use of force or threat of force with the intent to deprive the owner of the property permanently. Armed robbery is a distinct crime in Maryland.
In order to be guilty, the defendant will have done all of the same acts as in a robbery crime, but with the use of a dangerous or deadly weapon such as a firearm, knife, or any other weapon that can cause serious injury or death. In fact, just displaying a note claiming to possess a dangerous weapon, whether the suspect uses or even possesses the weapon, can result in a conviction under this law. For more information about the associated crime of carjacking, see the chart below.
Maryland Robbery Laws at a Glance
The charges and penalties under Maryland’s robbery laws are in the following chart. Keep in mind there is a separate charge for an armed robbery offense in Maryland.
Md. Ann. Code §3-402 (Robbery)
Md. Ann. Code §3-403 (Armed Robbery)
Robbery: Felony, up to 15 years in prison, fine, restitution to victim
Armed Robbery: Felony, up to 20 years prison, fine, restitution to victim
Possible Defenses (Not an Exhaustive List)
- Actual Innocence
- Lack of Positive Identification of Suspect
- Police Misconduct
Md. Ann. Code §3-405: Felony, up to 30 years in prison, fine, restitution to victim
Note: It is not a defense under this section that the defendant did not intend to permanently deprive the owner or possessor of the motor vehicle.
Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Maryland Codes and Court of Appeals Opinions
If you have additional questions about Maryland’s robbery laws, click on the following links below to learn more:
Charged With Robbery? Contact a Local Attorney Today
The penalties and consequences associated with a robbery, armed robbery, or even carjacking conviction can be severe. Having a strong criminal defense strategy is imperative. You can learn more about the possible defenses available to you by speaking with a Maryland criminal defense attorney.