Sudden snatching means to take money or other property from the victim's person with the intent to temporarily or permanently deprive the victim or owner of the money or property and when in the course of the taking, the victim was or became aware of the taking. Someone who grabs a purse off of a woman's arm is a common example of sudden snatching.
The State Attorney's Office must prove certain elements in order to successfully convict someone of sudden snatching. These elements include:
Unlike Strong Arm Robbery, the prosecution is not required to prove that force, violence, or threats were used while the robbery occurred. However, the sudden snatching requires that the stolen property must have been suddenly and unexpectedly taken away from the grip or possession of the person. The victim must also become aware of the sudden snatching as it is occurring.
Robbery by sudden snatching is categorized as a third degree felony and offers penalties ranging from up to five years in prison, up to five years of probation, or up to $5,000 in fines. If a weapon is in possession while committing the sudden snatching, regardless of whether or not the weapon is used, the crime then becomes a second degree felony. If convicted of sudden snatching while in possession of a weapon, there is a minimum prison sentence of 21 months in prison. Additionally, the defendant can be sentence to up to fifteen years in prison, up to fifteen years of probation, and up to $10,000 in fines.
Being convicted of robbery by sudden snatching can negatively affect a person's future for years to come. If you or a loved one has been charged with this crime, our Tampa criminal attorneys are available to explain how we can help protect your rights, freedom, and future. For a free consultation, contact our firm today.