Answer: In Georgia, armed robbery is one of the Seven Deadly Sins and under O.C.G.A. 16-8-41(a), “a person commits armed robbery when, with intent to commit theft, he or she takes property of another from the person or the immediate presence of another by use of an offensive weapon….”
Georgia sentencing law is quite strict in the case of armed robbery, particularly if a person is at least 17 years old, the age of majority in Georgia for the purposes of criminal legal process. Thus, your son would be tried as an adult and, in accordance with O.C.G.A. 16-8-41(b), would be subject to no less than 10 years in prison. That would be a solid, 10 year sentence. No portion of it can be suspended, stayed, deferred or probated meaning your son would serve every day of that ten years and not be eligible for parole until age 27.
So, rather than going to his prom, graduating high school, voting for the first time, going to college and graduate school, starting a career and getting married—all of the life experiences males usually have between 17 and 27—he would be serving that time in a maximum security state prison with violent career criminals, many much older than he is.
Moreover, prosecutors have sole discretion over whether or not to reduce the case to robbery, which means less severe sentencing. But, if your child has a juvenile record, prosecutors may decide not to reduce the charge to robbery, meaning he would be subject to that mandatory minimum 10 years in prison. (However, a judge would not be able to consider any juvenile history in sentencing.)
Additionally, in some cases, offenders have been sentenced to up to 25 years in prison and parole boards require that they serve at least 90% of that sentence before being considered for parole. In other cases, the sentence imposed can be life in prison.
So, like any of the Seven Deadly Sins in Georgia, armed robbery is a very serious crime with significant, lifelong consequences for offenders and their families.
If you or someone you know have been accused of armed robbery or any of Georgia’s other Seven Deadly Sins, please seek the advice of an experienced criminal defense attorney in the area of serious violent offenses. In Georgia, please contact The Boddie Law Group, LLC at 404-287-2393 for a complete and thorough consultation.