Penalties for Armed Robbery in Illinois

Penalties for Armed Robbery in Illinois


The State of Illinois reported 12,672 cases of robbery in the year 2020, with the city of Chicago alone reporting 7864 of them. This number puts the state one among the top 5 states in the US with robbery reports. But does this mean all these cases received more or less the same penalties? The intricacies of law are such that it never is so simple. With bonafide research and the experience of a Chicago Criminal Attorney, here is an uncomplicated breakdown of what could be these variants.


Robbery According to Law


  • According to Chapter 720 of Illinois Compiled Statutes, Section 18 on robbery describes it as knowingly taking someone else’s property while using threats of force or potential use of force. Depending on the circumstances, this could be further understood as aggravated robbery or armed robbery. Vehicular hijacking is dealt with as a separate subsection altogether.


  • Aggravated robbery occurs when a robbery occurs, and the perpetrator threatens or indicates that a weapon or similar will be used if the victim doesn’t comply. This extends even to using medical substances to subdue the victim in any manner.


  • Armed robbery occurs with the perpetrator possessing and/or using a firearm or dangerous weapon to subdue the victim. This also has many different subsections depending on the degree of usage of the weapon, and we shall look at them in detail.

Class of Felony

Felony classes for robbery, aggravated robbery, or armed robbery with a firearm may be Class X, Class 1, or Class 2, depending on the severity of the crime. The sentences for crimes are given out following the felony and the presiding judge’s decision. Each crime may have different aspects like age, circumstance, motive, and incidents so that the final sentence may differ between every case.


  • A Class X felony is the highest and most severe felony, which carries with it a heavy sentence as well. In addition to the imprisonment term decided by the court, a minimum of six years up to 30 years is the norm. This is also accompanied by a steep fine of up to $25,000. Furthermore, a Class X felony means that the accused also does not qualify for probation during the term of imprisonment.


  • A Class 1 felony is the next most severe and is accordingly accompanied by fines of up to $25,000 and a minimum sentence of 4 years up to 15 years in prison. However, such Class 1 felonies are usually judged in combination with other charges, so the term of imprisonment may change.


  • A Class 2 felony is seen as less severe, and that degree is apparent in the sentencing terms as well. This type of conviction demands not less than three years and up to seven years of imprisonment and fines not exceeding $25,000. Class 1 felonies may be judged in combination with other charges that can lead to an increased or decreased term of imprisonment.


Class 3 and Class 4 felonies are also present, but we shall see how Class X, Class 1, and Class 2 felonies are charged in the purview of robbery charges.


Armed Robbery penalties


Chapter 720 of Illinois Compiled Statutes, Section 18-2 on armed robbery describes armed robbery in 4 subsections. For this, let’s take a hypothetical situation where Joe is arrested for armed robbery. He will be charged with a Class X felony with some variation.


  • If a defendant possesses a dangerous weapon (not a firearm) like a knife, blunt assault weapons, or similar in his person at the time of the robbery, he would be charged with a Class X felony.
  • If a defendant carries a firearm anywhere in his person at the time of a robbery, 15 years will be added to whatever is the term of imprisonment as decided by the court.
  • Now, if the defendant ends up discharging this firearm during the robbery event, that makes the charge higher, with a possibility of 20 years being added to the term of imprisonment.
  • If anyone is injured during the usage of the firearm, the defendant will have to serve 25 years or a term of natural life in addition to the term of imprisonment.


Aggravated Robbery Penalties

In Sept 2020, a man and two teenagers held up a gun and robbed a man in a parking lot in Palatine. While the two boys were sent to juvenile custody, the 24- year old was charged with a count of aggravated robbery. Such cases of aggravated robbery are charged as a Class 1 felony. So even if it’s discovered there was no weapon, its threat still counts as aggravated robbery.

All other robberies, usually called strong-arm robberies, are classified as Class 2 felonies. With a few exceptions, of course.


With such different ways of how a robbery can be charged, it’s essential that the various penalties and classes are understood for a good defense. A good criminal attorney will be able to understand these nuances and have the experience to deal with the additional complexities of the case. Call Goldman & Associates at 773.484.3131 for a free consultation.

Contact Information