Property Damage Law

We all know that it is criminal to damage others property especially with a particular motive. Property, by definition is something that is owned by a person or an entity. Also known as the criminal damage offence, the US legal system includes the following acts under the law: arson (damage due to fire), posting bills or defacing a property ( sticking promotional posters or making graffiti without permission), tampering with a vehicle owned by someone else and threatening to destroy or damage property.

Penalties and Compensation for Victims of Property Damage

According to the property damage law, a person found guilty of damaging or destroying property can be charged with penalties that include fines, imprisonment or both. Service to community may be the mildest form of penalty. The guilty is often ordered by the court to replace or pay for the damage done to the property of the plaintiff. This is called restitution.

If the prosecution has enough evidence to prove an accused guilty then in most circumstances a petty demeanor is punishable up to 6 months in prison with a fine of not more than $500. If the damages have resulted in more than $1000 loss to the victim then the offender is charged with 4th degree felony that means a prison term of 18 months with restitution and 160 hours of community service.

Defense Strategies for Property Damage Offense

When accused of property damage, a conviction could lead to criminal conviction apart from other penalties. This leaves the offender with a criminal record for a life time, the consequences of which can often be very difficult to live with. To avoid getting a criminal record one of the defense strategies would be to accept a plea deal. This means fixing damages through sufficient compensation to the victim, which when handled well can prevent a criminal record from being filed against the defender.

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