The Texas Penal Code defines these infractions of the law, and details the oath. They may seem similar but since the penalties for conviction can range from probation to 99 years in state prison their differences can carry huge consequences.
Theft (or Larceny) is defined by the Texas Penal Code as "unlawfully appropriating property with intent to deprive the owner of property." Unlawful appropriation occurs if it is without the owner's consent or the property was stolen and the perpetrator was aware of this. Other considerations such as previous transactions and testimony of an accomplice also enter into the definition. It's best to let a criminal attorney sort this out if you are facing charges.
Theft is a misdemeanor if it involves property value of less than $ 1,500. It can be considered a felony if it the property value is more than $ 1,500 or involved weapons. There are a large number of circumstances where theft can be classed as a felony depending on where the theft took place, what was stolen and fromom.
There are three classes of misdemeanors which carry fines from $ 500 to $ 4,000 and sentences of up to one year in jail.
Robbery is defined in the Texas Penal Code as, "in the course of committing the theft with intent to obtain or maintain control of the property a person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causes bodily injury to another person or intentally or knowingly threatens or places another in fear of bodily injury or death. " Robbery occurs when the victim is present during the theft.
Robbery is considered a second degree felony with sentences of 2 to 20 years in a state prison and / or a fine up to $ 10,000
Aggravated Robbery is a Violent Crime
Aggravated robbery is defined by the Texas Penal Code as "in the course of committing a robbery the perpetrator causing serious bodily injury to another, uses or exhibits a deadly weapon or causes bodily injury to another person or threats or places another person in fear of imminent bodily injury or death, if the other person is 65 years old or older or disabled. "
Aggravated robbery is classified as violent crime while theft-larceny is classified as a property crime. Aggravated robbery is a first degree felony carrying sentences of 5 to 99 years in state prison and / or a fine of up to $ 10,000.
These laws and the definition of these laws in Texas, as is other states, are complicit and open to interpretation based on the particular set of circumstances surrounding the crime. Sentencing for these offsets are equally complicated and may come from jury recommendations if the case goes to trial, a bargain plea to a lesser offense made to the prosecutor by your defense attorney or a judge may impede sentencing. A criminal defense attorney is normally a necessary element in these types of criminal proceedings.