Discover the diffrences between burgalary vs robbery vs larcency in this article.We’ve often heard people complain about how they’ve been robbed. Whenever a crime involving material possessions is talked about, the words ‘theft’ or ‘robbery’ are mostly the only ones that come into play. However, the vocabulary involving a crime like this is more diverse and it’s important to know one term from another, especially when all of us are potential victims.
In a wider sense, the name given to all offenses like these is true, theft. A ‘theft’ is a crime where the suspect takes away the victims property without his/her consent with the intention of not returning it back to them and depriving them of their own valuables permanently. Theft can further be classified into other less versatile offenses depending upon the value of the property taken and the manner in which it was taken. The three most distinctive types of thefts are burglary, robbery, and larceny.
‘Burglary’ is defined as a crime where there is an unauthorized entry into any structure which contains people or property, where the suspect has a criminal intention. ‘Larceny’ is basically stealing. It’s when the suspect takes away the article of another person without his/her consent, it can be done anywhere and at any time. ‘Robbery’ is a crime where there is a force involved, the snatching away of the possession of the victim through physical force or fear.
The three terms and the differences between them are discussed here in detail.
Basic Features Of Burglary, Robbery, And Larceny
Unauthorized entry into any residence or building (can be any confined space protecting people or property) with the involvement of physical force is called Burglary. Both something as radical as a breaking of doors and as passive as a slight push to the door qualify as physical force. However, the crime qualifies as a burglary only if the intention of the offender was malicious: theft, physical, assault or battery. So, if you have been accused of burglary then the first thing that would be checked upon you is that whether you had any intention of theft or any other malicious activity inside the victim’s house.
Hence, it does not matter whether the actual theft took place at all, or whether there was any person to person interaction if an entry has been made with the wrong intentions, the crime of burglary has occurred. There are two definitive types of entries that can take place in burglary: actual entry or constructive entry.
Actual entry is when the body part or any tool that the suspect is holding enters inside the structure
Constructive entry is when the person has not directly entered the structure but has caused some other person to do so on his behalf. He would still be convicted of burglary.
Robbery is the act of larceny with the involvement of a violent force or threat. There has to be person to person involvement, either verbal or physical, at the time of the act in order for it to qualify as a robbery. The force used on the victim can be both physical forces of the body and the force of weapon like a gun, knife, club, pipe, etc. The threat used on the victim with any kind of a weapon can just be used to scare the victim and subordinate them with no physical harm caused. As long as a violent threat is made, the crime qualifies as a robbery.
Robbery unlike burglary is not confined to any closed boundaries and can be performed both at an open space and a structure.There are two types of robbery-
Armed Robbery is when lethal weapons are involved in the crime like a gun, knife, etc.
Strong Arm Robbery occurs when there is the use of any kind of physical force over the victim to solve the purpose without any weapons involved.
A person who is proven guilty of robbery can suffer harsh punishments from the state as it is considered a violent crime and is a highly punishable offense.
When an unauthorized taking of property from another person with an intent to permanently deprive that person of that property takes place, the act is referred to as a ‘larceny.’ There is no use of force or threat to complete the act and unlike burglary, the act isn’t required to occur in a confined space or a structure, unlike burglary for it to qualify as larceny. It can take place anywhere and anytime. However, the act has to be done in the presence of the victim.Examples of larceny are pickpocketing, cell phone snatch from the victim’s hand, chain grab, etc.
Charges Of Burglary And Robbery
Both Burglary and Robbery come under the crimes of ‘threat’ and are punishable crimes in most of the countries. The punishment in both these cases depends upon the degree of harm the act has caused to the victim. The suspects of both burglary and robbery can be punished in different ways by the court which would be according to the loss they have caused. Although, the punishment can be more severe in the case of robbery as there is the use of force applied to the victim at the time of the crime.
All robberies are classified as ‘felonies’ and all are ‘strikes’ under California’s ‘Three Strikes Law’. Burglaries, on the other hand, are ‘wobblers’ as they can be charged either as ‘misdemeanor’ or a ‘felony’ depending upon the degree of loss. However, if a person is charged with the ‘Aggravated Burglary’ that is, when the burglar causes any kind of physical harm to the victim such as bashing up or sexual assault with an intention of causing harm to the victim then the crime of burglary can be severely punishable and turns into a ‘felony’.
For the victim- Any of these crimes must be reported to the police as soon as the event takes place and you should immediately consult a good lawyer in case you have to reach the court in order to get your property back. The least you can do in this situation is to avoid it by taking the safety measures for your home and being alert and careful of your belongings when you go out.
For the accused- If you have been accused of any of these three crimes then you must consult a proper lawyer who would tell you about the provisions attached to this crime and you must know clearly what crime you have committed exactly and what is the degree of punishment that you can get.
A ‘Burglary’ can become a ‘Robbery’ when the suspect has a violent face to face interaction with the victim or any other person living inside his/her property. When the burglar is caught and in his defense, he uses any kind of force muscular or weapons to physically harm or terrify the victim in order to escape or fulfill his purpose than the crime changes to robbery.
The main difference between the three degrees of burglary are based on the type of the enclosed structure inside which, a burglary takes place. The 1st-degree burglary is when the burglar enters inside a proper house inhabited by people- families or friends, etc. It can be a bungalow, an apartment, rented room or any other such structure. The 2nd degree burglary happens when the burglar enters inside a professional building where there is no family or friends living but people work at such places, for example, a store, shopping mall or an office, etc. and the 3rd degree burglary is when the structure is a confined space which is a moving vehicle like a bus, car, truck, a cab, etc.
The basic difference between a burglary and robbery is that the former is a ‘property crime’ while the latter is a ‘violent crime’. However, if it is an ‘Aggravated Burglary’ than in that case, the crime does not remain a property crime and changes to a violent crime. The only difference between an aggravated burglary and robbery is that in the case of the former, more intention is involved than that of ‘theft’, the criminal does not only intend to perform theft but also wants to cause physical harm to the victim while in the latter’s case, there is a single intention of ‘theft’ through violent means like threat or physical assault.