Building a Fairfax armed robbery defense means trying to understand the facts of the matter and what was going on at that time, what the scene looked like at the time of the alleged robbery, and are any witnesses available. An attorney is thinking in terms of the elements and they are trying to see what facts match with what statement and if there are enough facts to prove all of that. Consult with a professional attorney for more on the process.
The first thing an attorney does is assess the facts and the situation as relayed to them by the defendant. They spot any issues or any weaknesses there, and they also plan for preserving the evidence that could be available.
An attorney tries to find video footage that could have been caught on camera or possible witnesses that could be interviewed by sending an investigator. They are preparing to run down the list of facts that are available to see throughout evaluating if there are any defenses to be made. For instance, one of the elements of the charge is to permanently deprive a person of the property. An attorney will look for evidence that demonstrates if the person attempted to derive another person of property.
If it seems like the defendant had intended to return what was taken, that is an armed robbery defense in Fairfax. Those are the things that an attorney looks for. They also find and interview witnesses and the credibility of those witnesses, what will each one say, what is the assessment of their testimony, and if that proves or disproves any factual evidence.
In negotiating an armed robbery down to theft, the attorney must see if the culpability was slight. What the defendant did, even though it does qualify as a robbery but the degree is slight, instead of a weapon, they were holding, a BB gun or something that was not capable of hurting or causing a lot of injuries. Maybe that is not the best scenario, but a situation where the degree of culpability is not very high can be used to negotiate armed robbery down to theft.
Another scenario is a justification for what the defendant did because of a reasonable event, like trying to save someone. Another scenario is that the government cannot prove robbery so they can prove a taking, they can prove an intent to permanently deprive, and they can prove that it was taken from a person or from their presence, but they cannot really prove that it was done with the threat of force or the like.
That would be a scenario where charges can be amended down, and it is a scenario where defendant accepts responsibility and takes steps in order to mitigate what happened, pay restitution to the family, and take theft classes or counseling courses. In scenarios where the defendant does any of those things, the robbery charge would be amended down to theft to larceny. A Virginia armed robbery attorney can speak more towards armed robbery defenses in Fairfax.