armed robbery

Armed Robbery Charges Dismissed

Last week, in the 36th District Court, criminal defense attorneys Dana Nessel and Chris Kessel secured a major victory for their client.  Charges of armed robbery, felonious assault, and felony firearm, were all dismissed against our client.  The charges were brought as a result of an altercation where 5 people were present; the complaining witness and the 4 defendants.  The complaining witness claimed that he went to the home of one of the defendants, where all 4 men (including our client) were present.  According to the testimony, the 4 men asked the complaining witness about some money the men believed the man owed them.  Then, the conversation turned violent as three of he men engaged in a fight with the complaining witness.  The key was that there was never any testimony that our client was involved in the physical fight.  Eventually the men separated, at which point our client had a conversation with the complaining witness about the money he believed he was owed.  However, at that point, one of the other three men pulled a gun and began shooting into the air.

All four men were charged with armed robbery, felonious assault, and felony firearm.  At the preliminary exam, the attorney for the other defendants focused their attention primarily on the actions of the complaining witness.  However, Dana Nessel and Chris Kessel had a different strategy; focusing on the actions of their client.  Through extensive cross-examination of the complaining witness, Dana Nessel was able to establish that our client took no part in the actual fight, nor did he attempt to take any money from the complaining witness.

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Robbery vs. Larceny Defense Attorney

Nessel and Kessel Law recently retained a client who was charged with unarmed robbery.  After speaking with the client it became clear that he did not understand why he was being charged with robbery as opposed to simple larceny.  Even the most experienced criminal defense attorneys in Michigan find the law in this area is equal parts simple and frustrating. 

Let’s start with the definition of “larceny” first.  A larceny is the taking of something with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of the property.  Simply put, larceny is theft.  Larceny from a person is when you take something from someone, with the intent to permanently deprive that person of whatever has been taken.  The difference between robbery and larceny is the extra element of force.

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