Robbery vs. Armed Robbery Under the Illinois Criminal Code

The Illinois Criminal Code features laws against and penalties for various illegal acts, such as robbery or armed robbery. In general terms, robbery is a theft crime where the perpetrator uses force or the threat of force to complete the offense. The corresponding punishment can vary depending on certain factors, including the type of victim and possession or use of a weapon. 


720 ILCS 5/18-1 of the Illinois Criminal Code establishes the rule against robbery. This section makes it unlawful for any person to:

    Knowingly steal anything from a property owner; Directly from the owner’s presence or person; and By using force or the threat of force. 

Section 18-1 does provide an important exception in this context. Robbery crimes do not involve motor vehicles. The Illinois Criminal Code has a separate statute that criminalizes the forceful theft of motor vehicles, which is referred to as carjacking. 

At a [...]

Approximately 30 Arrested After Recent Looting in Bloomington and Normal

Local law enforcement has arrested approximately 30 people after a rash of looting and thefts throughout Bloomington and Normal, according to an article by The Pantagraph. Many of these individuals face felony charges for looting, mob action, and various other offenses. 

These criminal incidents occurred after countless droves engaged in non-violent demonstrations in protest of George Floyd’s death at the hands of police officers. Taking advantage of overwhelmed law enforcement agencies, there was widespread looting and burglary at various stores and commercial businesses. 

According to official statements, law enforcement arrested more than 20 people in the immediate aftermath of the looting. More recently, law enforcement arrested another six people in connection with a specific looting incident. The authorities have already filed preliminary charges against many of these alleged criminal actors. 

Although the criminal charges vary greatly from person to person, two of the most common charges were looting and [...]

What is the Difference Between Theft, Burglary, and Robbery in Illinois?

While commonly used interchangeably, theft, burglary, and robbery are actually completely separate crimes under Illinois law. To understand and appreciate the subtle differences between these criminal offenses, the following sections will explore relevant laws and penalties under Illinois state law. 


Illinois laws against and penalties for theft crimes appear under 720 ILCS 5/16-1. A person commits theft under this section if they obtain control over another person’s property:

    Without authorization; Using deception; Employing threats; Knowing, or having a reason to know, that the property was stolen or likely stolen; or That is in the custody of law enforcement or a similar agency. 

The penalty for this offense changes based on the type of theft in question. For example, theft of items worth less than $500 that occurs:

    From the Person — Results in Class A misdemeanor charges, which are punishable by a maximum of 364 days

Analyzing Three Kinds of Robbery Crimes Under Illinois Law

The Illinois Criminal Code includes prohibitions against many types of theft crimes, including three kinds of robbery. In all respects, robbery must involve the use of force or the imminent threat of force. Though the corresponding penalties fluctuate based on whether the offender committed robbery, aggravated robbery, or armed robbery.


720 ILCS 5/18-1 establishes the Illinois laws against and penalties for robbery. Under Illinois law, a person commits robbery if they knowingly take property:

    From the person or presence of the victim; and Using force or the imminent threat of force. 

There is an exception to robbery laws. Section 18-1 does not apply to the theft of motor vehicles. Theft crimes involving motor vehicles are governed by separate sections of the Illinois Criminal Code. 

Under Section 18-1, robbery is typically a Class 2 felony. If convicted for this class of felony, the offender can face [...]