The Difference Between Theft, Burglary & Robbery
Theft, burglary, and robbery are all criminal offenses that involve taking property that does not belong to the offender. However, there are important differences between these offenses.
Overall, the key differences between these offenses lie in the manner in which the property was taken and the presence or absence of force or violence.
Read below as we go more in depth on each topic along with their penalties.
Theft in the state of Texas refers to the act of taking someone else’s property without their permission or consent and with the intent to deprive them of it permanently or temporarily.
Under Texas law, theft is classified as a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the value of the property stolen and other factors such as the defendant’s criminal history. The severity of the punishment also depends on the degree of the theft offense.
The degrees of theft charges in Texas are:
- Class C misdemeanor: Theft of property with a value of less than $100.
- Class B misdemeanor: Theft of property with a value of $100 or more but less than $750.
- Class A misdemeanor: Theft of property with a value of $750 or more but less than $2,500, or theft of certain specified property such as a firearm, a driver’s license or a credit card.
- State jail felony: Theft of property with a value of $2,500 or more but less than $30,000, or theft of property that is a controlled substance, a firearm or an exotic animal.
- Third-degree felony: Theft of property with a value of $30,000 or more but less than $150,000, or theft of certain specified property such as an ATM machine or a government document.
- Second-degree felony: Theft of property with a value of $150,000 or more.
- First-degree felony: Theft of property with a value of $300,000 or more
In the state of Texas, burglary is a criminal offense that involves unlawfully entering a building or other habitation with the intent to commit a felony, theft, or assault. The offense of burglary is defined in Texas Penal Code Section 30.02.
A person may face criminal charges if they unlawfully trespass into someone else’s house or residence. A building or habitation can include a home, a business, a vehicle, or any other structure used for shelter, work, or storage.
It is important to note that under Texas law, a person can be charged with burglary even if they did not actually commit a crime after entering the building or habitation. The mere act of entering with the intent to commit a crime is sufficient to support a burglary charge.
The penalties for burglary in the state of Texas depend on the specific circumstances of the offense, including the degree of the offense, the type of building or habitation entered, and whether the defendant was armed with a deadly weapon.
- Burglary of a habitation: This is a second-degree felony, punishable by a prison minimum sentence of 2 to 20 years with a fine up to $10,000.
- Burglary of a building or non-habitation structure: This is a state jail felony, punishable by a prison sentence of 180 days to 2 years with a fine up to $10,000.
- Burglary of a coin-operated machine: This is a state jail felony, punishable by a prison sentence of 180 days to 2 years with a fine $10,000.
- Burglary with the intent to commit a felony other than theft or assault: This is a first-degree felony, punishable by a prison sentence of 5 to 99 years or life imprisonment and a fine of up to $10,000.
This is a criminal offense that involves intentionally, knowingly or recklessly inflicting physical harm on someone else, intimidating or putting someone else in fear of imminent physical harm or death.
Robbery is defined in Texas Penal Code Section 29.02. Under Texas law, robbery is generally classified as a second-degree felony. However, the severity of the offense can increase to a first-degree felony if the person committing the robbery causes serious bodily injury to another person, uses or exhibits a deadly weapon, or robs a person who is 65 years of age or older or who is disabled.
It’s important to note that robbery is different from theft because it involves the use of force or the threat of force. In a robbery, the perpetrator not only takes property that doesn’t belong to them but also uses or threatens violence to accomplish their goal.
In the state of Texas, the penalties for robbery sentencing depend on the specific circumstances of the offense, including the degree of the offense and whether a deadly weapon was used or serious bodily injury was inflicted.
- Robbery: This is a second-degree felony, punishable by a prison sentence of 2 to 20 years and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Aggravated Robbery: This is a first-degree felony, punishable by a prison sentence of 5 to 99 years or life imprisonment and a fine of up to $10,000.
If the offender used a deadly weapon during the commission of the robbery or caused serious bodily injury to the victim, they could face enhanced penalties. Specifically, aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon is punishable by a minimum of 5 years and up to life imprisonment, while aggravating factor robbery causing serious bodily injury is punishable by a minimum of 10 years and up to life imprisonment.
In addition to these robbery charges, a person convicted with charges of robbery in Texas may also face other consequences, such as probation, restitution, and a criminal record that can have long-lasting effects on their personal and professional life. It’s important to note that these penalties are subject to change based on changes to Texas law and the specific circumstances of each case.
Arrested? Don’t Plea, Call me!
If you are facing accusations or charges that involve theft, you need to speak with an experienced theft criminal defense attorney to help with your case.
With this on your criminal record, your life can be altered completely. Having a theft, burglary, and robbery lawyer on your side fighting to get you little to no prison term will be extremely important. Having Texas Criminal Defense Group on your side will help to negotiate plea deals that will benefit you in hopes to have your case completely dropped.