Aggravated Robbery: Brandishing Fake Weapons and Pellet Guns

If you brandish a weapon during a robbery, expect a serious charge even if the “weapon” used in a crime was not a real gun. A growing number of average people in desperate situations plead guilty to aggravated robbery charges because of underlying problems or addictions.

With the growing pain killer addiction epidemic, people who would not normally compromise their values make negative life-changing decisions. They don’t always realize that even using a toy gun is a serious matter. If you have been charged with aggravated robbery, seek the help of an experienced St. Paul criminal defense lawyer. The possible fines and prison time is severe.

According to an article, one recent high-profile case involved a former special education teacher who pointed out what appeared to be a black handgun at a pharmacist in a pharmacy. The woman wanted oxycodone, a highly-addictive pain medication. It turned out the weapon was an Airsoft pellet gun.

Still, the woman pled guilty to first-degree aggravated robbery. In another highly-publicized case, two brothers allegedly robbed a Dollar General Store while brandishing an air pistol. The two brothers face aggravated robbery in the first-degree. According to a report by, the charge carries a $35,000 fine and/or 20 years in prison.

Relying On a Strong Defense

Because of the major consequences of being found guilty of aggravated robbery, don’t make the mistake of trying to fend for yourself in court. A legal team comes up with the best defense strategy by going over the evidence including witness statements and surveillance footage. Some of the defenses used to defend against an aggravated robbery charge include lack of intention, evidence of an alibi, entrapment, statute of limitation, and challenging evidence including eyewitness testimony. If you can prove you were somewhere else at the time of the crime, it helps your case.

Unraveling the Different Types of Charges

Unlike simple robbery that is a less severe charge, aggravated robbery typically applies when a weapon is used or banished during the robbery. Felony crimes are often charged according to aggravating factors. With a simple robbery, a defendant faces 10 years in prison and fines of up to $20,000. But with an aggravated robbery in the second-degree in which you imply with words or actions that you have a dangerous weapon while robbing someone, you face up to 15 years in prison as well as $30,000 in fines. The most severe robbery charge is aggravated robbery in the first degree, which means you were armed with an item that could be used as a dangerous weapon during a robbery. Again, even if the weapon used in the alleged crime was a toy gun, it’s still likely you will face stiff penalties.

Depending on the details of your specific case, you could also face charges other than aggravated robbery. Before talking to investigators or even trusted friends or family members, make sure you call an attorney who can represent you.

At Rogosheske, Rogosheske & Atkins, we help our clients with a defense for aggravated robbery. We are experienced and reputable St. Paul criminal defense lawyers. Talk to us if you have been charged with murder, rape, and assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated robbery, or other serious crimes. We have practiced law in South St. Paul for more than 60 years. We have a non-judgmental attitude, providing the most aggressive defense possible for our valued clients. We also help parents who have young adult children who are over their heads because of being at the wrong place at the wrong time or hanging out with a bad crowd.

For more information on handling serious charges that require a sophisticated defense, please contact us.