Robbery; Inchoate Crimes; Defenses: Justification and Excuse

A person is believed to have committed or attempted to commit robbery if they use force or coercion to take away someone’s property. There are four elements that a person found guilty of robbery must have done and these are;

  • He must have taken something from its rightful owner
  • His act must be without the consent of the owner
  • He intends to steal the property
  • Uses force or threats to coerce the owner

Robbery Plan: Case about Sam and his Prosecution

According to Allen, M (2005) it is the responsibility of the prosecutor to prove beyond reasonable doubts that Sam committed robbery. Sam did not steal the truck and to constitute robbery; someone must have taken something from its rightful owner. To constitute the second element, Sam must have acted without owner’s permission, which is up to the prosecution to prove. The plan was intersected before materializing. To be able to steal such a vehicle which is publically known to be well guarded, it is rational to think that the robber should be armed. The final elements are threats or force, which Sam did not use.

There can be charges against Sam on attempted robbery, from the case. When Sam tried to drive the truck away that’s attempt; and the revelation thereafter is enough to prosecute him only if there is concrete evidence. In order to have other people on bond, Sam make agreements including how to pay them for their services; that amounts to solicitation. Sam conspires with his friends to execute his plan. In his excuse Sam can argue that he has done none of the four elements of robbery.

Conspiracy between Sam and Chuck is clearly seen when Sam shares his plan with him and seemed to agree to it. He participated and therefore, liable for attempted robbery.  He knew the whole plan from the beginning, but he did not take part in stealing the truck. However, there is nothing that indicates any form of solicitation between him and Sam. Chuck can give the excuse that he was not to benefit in any way from the whole plan as none of the elements of robbery can be attributable to him.

Justification and Excuse

From the facts of the case, there are no indications that Sam shared his plan with John. From what we know, people with Down Syndrome may not be considered as right thinking. Because of that, he may not be liable for attempted robbery. For solicitation, he may be prosecuted given that he was given ice cream and candy. John conspired by agreeing to be around the bank so that he can call Sam notifying him of tracks movement. John can however, give the excuse that he was not privy to Sam’s plans. He can also argue that Sam took advantage of his condition to involve him, and this can be proved by what is paid for his services.

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