Larceny FAQs

What’s the difference between burglary and robbery?

People mistakenly use these terms somewhat interchangeably. A burglary is stealing a structure, whether it is a dwelling or a commercial structure. That means entering a building or a house unlawfully, or remaining unlawfully. A robbery is the taking of property by force from a person.

Everybody thinks about somebody breaking into a house, and that is the quintessential burglary. Another example is shoplifting from Macy’s or Best Buy, The store is not going to press charges; however, the person who shoplifted will have to sign an agreement saying they will never come back to the store or can’t come back for five years.

A robbery is what we see on the news. For example, somebody goes into Central Park and is accosted by a mugger with a gun. A robbery does not involve any kind of dwelling or structure.

New York does not consider a car a burglary. That is simply just a larceny or a theft of some kind. It could be criminal mischief depending on damage that is done, but New York is one of the states that does not consider a vehicle a dwelling.

Larceny FAQs

What’s the difference between burglary and robbery?