What Is the Difference Between Theft, Robbery, and Burglary Charges in Texas? | Wilson County Defense Attorney

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What Is the Difference Between Theft, Robbery, and Burglary Charges in Texas?

 Posted on June 10,2021 in Criminal Defense

TX defense lawyerIn everyday conversation, the words “robbery,” “theft,” and “burglary” are often used to mean the same thing. However, in a legal setting, these words are not necessarily able to be used interchangeably. In most states, there are distinct differences between all three charges, as well as different punishments for committing each. If you have been charged with any of these crimes in Texas, you should understand exactly what that crime is.


There are various situations that can constitute a theft crime. In general, however, theft occurs when a person “unlawfully appropriates property” with the intent of depriving the owner of the property of the item’s use. Texas law states that property is unlawfully appropriated when:

  • It occurs without the owner’s consent.
  • The property is stolen and the perpetrator knows that such property is stolen, but still appropriates it.
  • The property is in the custody of law enforcement under suspicion it has been stolen and the perpetrator appropriates the property.

The value of the stolen property is usually one of the biggest factors in determining a sentence for a theft conviction, but it is not the only factor. For example, a person can be charged with a Class C misdemeanor if the value of the stolen items was less than $100, which carries a fine of up to $500. However, a person can also be charged up to a first-degree felony if the value of the stolen items was $300,000 or more. This means a person could face between five and 99 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.


Texas law states that robbery occurs when a person commits theft and in the process either:

  • Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causes bodily injury to another person
  • Intentionally places another person in fear of bodily injury or death

In some cases, a robbery can be considered “aggravated.” If the charge is elevated to aggravated robbery, it is because the actor committed the offense and caused serious bodily injury, used or exhibited a deadly weapon, or committed the offense against an elderly or disabled person.

Basic robbery is charged as a second-degree felony, which carries a potential sentence of two to 20 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. Aggravated robbery is a first-degree felony.


In Texas, burglary occurs when a person enters or remains inside of a home or building with the intent to commit a felony, theft, or assault. In most cases, burglary is charged as a second-degree felony. If the crime is committed in a place other than a home, such as a store, the crime is charged as a state jail felony, which carries between 180 days and two years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.

Our Floresville, TX Criminal Defense Lawyers Are Here to Help

If you have been charged with any type of crime, you need skilled representation from a criminal defense lawyer. BRCK Criminal Defense Attorneys has successfully helped dozens of clients facing criminal charges for robbery, burglary and theft either have their sentences lessened or in many cases, have the charges dropped altogether. Schedule a free consultation with our Wilson County criminal defense attorneys today by calling our office at 830-769-1010.






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