Justice Thomas continued in relevant part: This understanding is buttressed by the then widely accepted definitions of robbery among the States, a significant majority of which defined nonaggravated robbery as requiring a degree of force sufficient only to overcome a victim’s resistance. Under Stokeling’s reading, many of those state robbery statutes would not qualify as ACCA predicates. But federal criminal statutes should not be construed in ways that would render them inapplicable in many States. This understanding of “physical force” comports with Johnson v. United States, 559 U. S. 133. The force necessary for misdemeanor battery addressed in Johnson does not require resistance or even physical aversion on the part of the victim. Rather, the “slightest offensive touching” would qualify. It is thus different in kind from the force necessary to overcome resistance by a victim, which is inherently “violent” in the sense contemplated by Johnson and “suggests a degree of power that would not be satisfied by the merest touching.” Johnson did not purport, as Stokeling suggests, to establish a force threshold so high as to exclude even robbery from ACCA’s scope.
Stokeling’s suggested definition of “physical force”—force “reasonably expected to cause pain or injury”—is inconsistent with the degree of force necessary to commit robbery at common law. Moreover, the Court declined to adopt this standard in Johnson. Stokeling’s proposal would prove exceedingly difficult to apply, would impose yet another indeterminable line-drawing exercise on the lower courts, and is not supported by United States v. Castleman, 572 U. S. 157.
Robbery under Florida law qualifies as an ACCA-predicate offense under the elements clause. The term “physical force” in ACCA encompasses the degree of force necessary to commit common-law robbery. And the Florida Supreme Court has made clear that the robbery statute requires “resistance by the victim that is overcome by the physical force of the offender.” Robinson v. State, 692 So. 2d 883, 886.
The slightest use of force can convert a relatively minor offense into a very serious one. A classic example is a shoplifting in which the shoplifter pushes the security guard on the way out of the store. Shoplifting is generally an offense that is punished by a fine and/or probation, but not incarceration. A robbery in New Jersey requires at least five years in prison with four and one-half years of parole ineligibility.