Maybe you helped turn over a car after a wild party or you spray-painted your ex’s front door. It may have just been a prank or a moment’s impulsiveness, but if you damaged someone else’s property you might be charged with criminal mischief, possibly along with other charges like public drunkenness.
Criminal mischief charges cover a broad spectrum of situations. The charges vary widely but can include jail time, fines and a criminal record. An experienced defense attorney may be able to lessen the punishment.
What You Need To Know About Criminal Mischief
In Pennsylvania, you can face criminal mischief charges if you intentionally or recklessly:
- Use fire or explosives to intentionally or recklessly damage tangible property.
- Tamper with tangible property in a way that endangers property or people.
- Cause someone monetary loss.
Or if you intentionally:
- Deface or damage public or other property with graffiti, using paint, spray paint or markers.
- Damage someone else’s property.
- Deface property with a paintball gun.
Depending on the circumstances, the charges for criminal mischief can range from a felony to misdemeanor to a summary offense. You may also be required to pay restitution.
What Your Lawyer Can Do
Your attorney will carefully review every aspect of your case to determine if there is evidence for all you have been accused of.
- Your lawyer will make every effort to discredit any evidence not in your favor.
- Much of what your lawyer can do to help you will depend on the exact circumstances of your case.
- You might not have had criminal intent. If so, your lawyer will gather the evidence or witnesses to prove it.
Your lawyer will be looking at every avenue that can help you, so it’s important that you give them all of the information that can support your case.
How A Lawyer Will Help
When you are up against a criminal mischief charge, even before your first hearing you will be facing a determined prosecutor. You need an attorney who will stand by you every step of the way, work hard to discredit any evidence – and work with you to determine your best course of action.
Pennsylvania Criminal Mischief Law
Criminal mischief is described and defined under The Pennsylvania Criminal Code under Title 18, Chapter 33. Read the code here.
Questions? Contact us today.
Based on the evidence, Fienman Defense will try to show that the charges should be dismissed. If it’s in your best interest, we will work to negotiate a lesser sentence. Should the case go to trial, we will fight to present the strongest defense possible for your situation.