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What’s the Difference Between Burglary and Robbery?

Robbery vs Burglary

Many people use "burglary" and "robbery" interchangeably when speaking about a theft crime, however, they are actually different crimes. Robbery refers to the act of theft while using force or the threat of force. Whereas burglary refers to when a person enters a building with the intention of committing a crime.


A burglary happens when a person enters a home, business, or some other type of private property with the intent to commit a crime. This crime can include:

  1. theft;
  2. robbery; or
  3. rape.

Are Breaking and Entering and Burglary the Same?

A burglary can also be referred to as breaking and entering. However, the perpetrator does not have to physically break into a property for the crime to be classified as burglary. If they entered the premises uninvited, remained in an area after closing, or stayed somewhere they did not belong in order to commit a crime, they can be charged with burglary.

Degrees of Burglary in Florida

A person can be charged with one of three degrees of felony burglary:

  • Third-Degree Felony Burglary
  1. The person enters an empty structure
  2. The person does not commit assault or battery
  3. The person is not armed when entering, or while inside, the structure
  • Second-Degree Felony Burglary
  1. The person unlawfully enters or remains in a residence when the owner is not there
  2. The person unlawfully enters or remains in a residence when the owner is present
  • First-Degree Felony Burglary
  1. The person commits assault or battery in the course of committing the burglary
  2. The person is armed
  3. The person enters the structure or residence by using a motor vehicle to damage the property
  4. The person causes property damage of $1,000 or more


A robbery happens when a person takes money, property, or other assets from their rightful owner using violence, force, or threats of violence. To be convicted of robbery, the person must have intended to keep the stolen items from the owner (even temporarily).

A person can be charged with one of two degrees of felony robbery:

  • Second-Degree Felony Robbery
  1. The person did not carry a firearm or deadly weapon
  • First-Degree Felony Robbery
  1. The person carried a firearm or deadly weapon

It’s possible for a person to be convicted of both burglary and robbery if they broke into a structure or residence and stole some items with the intention of keeping them from the rightful owner.

Tinny, Meyer & Piccarreto, P.A. Burglary Defense Lawyers

Have you recently been arrested for burglary or robbery? Our team of criminal defense attorneys is here to help. We understand the importance of taking care of these charges as quickly as possible and we will do whatever we can to aggressively pursue a favorable outcome.

Contact our firm online or give us a call at (727) 245-9009 for a case evaluation.