NYC Criminal Mischief Lawyers
Criminal mischief happens when a person intentional destroys or defaces the property of another. This offense is most commonly known as vandalism. Interestingly enough, there is no crime in the NY penal code that’s called vandalism. According to New York Penal Law 145, criminal mischief applies if a person prevents another person from making an emergency call because they took or damaged the defendant’s phone. This crime can also involve tampering with electric or gas meters, graveyard, or a place of business. This offense is prosecutable in civil or criminal court. If the crime was committed against a business, the owner can decide whether they want to pursue a case in civil court. In civil court, the victim can sue for monetary damages.
The Four Degrees of Criminal Mischief
In New York, the offense of criminal mischief has four degrees. Criminal mischief in the fourth degree is classified as a misdemeanor. The offense is punishable by up to one year in jail. A person can be convicted if the damaged property has a value of up to $250.00. Usually, this type of vandalism involves graffiti that is found on the sides of buildings, fences, and subway walls. Anyone caught in possession of the tools used to make graffiti will face additional offenses. Criminal Mischief in the third degree is a felony. This crime is punishable by at least a year in jail. The crime applies to property that has a value between $250 and $1,000. Criminal mischief in the second degree occurs when the property damaged has a value of more than $1,500. This crime is a class D felony. Criminal mischief in the first degree gets charged when explosives are used to destroy the property. This is a class B felony.
This offense can occur in various ways, road rage is one way. The incident usually happened one a driver makes an error while driving and a dispute follows. In some situations, one party damages the other’s vehicle. The person who causes the damage gets arrested. To determine the crime that gets charged, the police will estimate the amount of damage to the car. If the damage exceeds more than $250, the defendant will be found guilty of this offense.
A New York District Attorney will not question an estimate for damage that the victim submits. Because of this, uncertainty is created as to whether the defendant should be charged with a misdemeanor or felony. If the incident escalates into physical altercation, the charges can escalate. These charges can include criminal menacing, assault, or possession of a weapon. A person who is convicted of this crime may face serious charges.
The consequences of these charges can negatively impact your life. Because of that, it’s important that you get legal guidance. Please contact us at the Spodek Law Group at 888-729-7065. Feel free to visit our website at https://www.criminallawyersnyc.com. Our attorneys will provide a free consultation to discuss your case. Our law offices are located throughout NYC and Long Island.