Criminal Mischief Defense Lawyer
If you have been charged with criminal mischief in Florida please contact Chris S. Boatright, P.A. at 407-740-8300 to discuss what options may be available to get your criminal mischief charge dismissed or reduced.
Former Criminal Mischief Prosecutor
As a former criminal mischief prosecutor Chris has an understanding of what can be important to the prosecutor in your criminal mischief case. It is important to understand how the other side works. Chris uses this understanding to determine what needs to be done to get the best possible outcome in your criminal mischief case.
Criminal Mischief Defense Lawyer Since 1999
Chris has been defending individuals charged with criminal mischief since 1999. Being a criminal mischief defense lawyer for so long has given Chris the opportunity to spend a lot of time working with the judges and prosecutors in Orlando that handle criminal mischief cases like yours. Experience dealing with those judges and prosecutors is important in achieving the best results in your criminal mischief case.
Different Criminal Mischief Defense Lawyers Get Different Results
When you have been charged with criminal mischief you need an aggressive, experienced, and knowledgeable lawyer like Chris to defend you. A criminal mischief conviction will stay on your record forever, therefore, it is important to be represented by the right lawyer. The better prepared you are for your court appearance the more likely it is you will get a favorable outcome. The best results possible are rarely obtained by just hoping for them. Get the help you need at Chris S. Boatright, P.A. to get the best results possible.
Information About Criminal Mischief Charges
A person commits the offense of criminal mischief if he or she willfully and maliciously injures or damages by any means any real or personal property belonging to another, including, but not limited to, the placement of graffiti thereon or other acts of vandalism thereto.
Criminal Mischief Penalties
1. If the damage to such property is $200.00 or less, it is a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable by a maximum of 60 days in jail and/or 6months probation and/or a $500.00 fine.
2. If the damage to such property is greater than $200 but less than $1,000, it is a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable by a maximum of 365 days in jail and/or 12 months probation and/or a $1,000 fine.
3. If the damage is $1,000 or greater, or if there is interruption or impairment of a business operation or public communication, transportation, supply of water, gas or power, or other public service which costs $1,000 or more in labor and supplies to restore, it is a felony of the third degree, punishable by a maximum of 5 years in prison and/or 5 years of probation and/or a $5,000 fine.
4. If the person has one or more previous convictions for violating this subsection, the offense under paragraph 1. or paragraph 2. for which the person is charged shall be reclassified as a felony of the third degree, punishable by a maximum of 5 years in prison and/or 5 years of probation and/or a $5,000 fine..
(2) Any person who willfully and maliciously defaces, injures, or damages by any means any church, synagogue, mosque, or other place of worship, or any religious article contained therein, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable by a maximum of 5 years in prison and/or 5 years of probation and/or a $5,000 fine., if the damage to the property is greater than $200.
(3) Whoever, without the consent of the owner thereof, willfully destroys or substantially damages any public telephone, or telephone cables, wires, fixtures, antennas, amplifiers, or any other apparatus, equipment, or appliances, which destruction or damage renders a public telephone inoperative or which opens the body of a public telephone, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable by a maximum of 5 years in prison and/or 5 years of probation and/or a $5,000 fine.; provided, however, that a conspicuous notice of the provisions of this subsection and the penalties provided is posted on or near the destroyed or damaged instrument and visible to the public at the time of the commission of the offense.
(4) Any person who willfully and maliciously defaces, injures, or damages by any means a sexually violent predator detention or commitment facility, as defined in part V of chapter 394, or any property contained therein, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable by a maximum of 5 years in prison and/or 5 years of probation and/or a $5,000 fine., if the damage to property is greater than $200.
Combined Value Of Damages
The amounts of value of damage to property owned by separate persons, if the property was damaged during one scheme or course of conduct, may be aggregated in determining the grade of the offense under this section.
Any person who violates this section may, in addition to any other criminal penalty, be required to pay for the damages caused by such offense.
Any person who violates this section when the violation is related to the placement of graffiti shall, in addition to any other criminal penalty, be required to pay a fine of:
1. Not less than $250 for a first conviction.
2. Not less than $500 for a second conviction.
3. Not less than $1,000 for a third or subsequent conviction.
(b) Any person convicted under this section when the offense is related to the placement of graffiti shall, in addition to any other criminal penalty, be required to perform at least 40 hours of community service and, if possible, perform at least 100 hours of community service that involves the removal of graffiti.
(c) If a minor commits a delinquent act prohibited under paragraph (a), the parent or legal guardian of the minor is liable along with the minor for payment of the fine. The court may decline to order a person to pay a fine under paragraph (a) if the court finds that the person is indigent and does not have the ability to pay the fine or if the court finds that the person does not have the ability to pay the fine whether or not the person is indigent.
In addition to any other penalty provided by law, if a minor is found to have committed a delinquent act under this section for placing graffiti on any public property or private property, and:
(a) The minor is eligible by reason of age for a driver license or driving privilege, the court shall direct the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles to revoke or withhold issuance of the minor’s driver license or driving privilege for not more than 1 year.
(b) The minor’s driver license or driving privilege is under suspension or revocation for any reason, the court shall direct the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles to extend the period of suspension or revocation by an additional period of not more than 1 year.
(c) The minor is ineligible by reason of age for a driver license or driving privilege, the court shall direct the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles to withhold issuance of the minor’s driver license or driving privilege for not more than 1 year after the date on which he or she would otherwise have become eligible.
A minor whose driver license or driving privilege is revoked, suspended, or withheld under subsection (7) may elect to reduce the period of revocation, suspension, or withholding by performing community service at the rate of 1 day for each hour of community service performed. In addition, if the court determines that due to a family hardship, the minor’s driver license or driving privilege is necessary for employment or medical purposes of the minor or a member of the minor’s family, the court shall order the minor to perform community service and reduce the period of revocation, suspension, or withholding at the rate of 1 day for each hour of community service performed. As used in this subsection, the term “community service” means cleaning graffiti from public property.
In order for the State of Florida to prove you committed the crime of criminal mischief, the State need’s evidence. Normally, the law enforcement officer’s report contains a statement of the evidence against you. However, there may be other evidence in your case which the law enforcement officer failed to document in the report. It is essential for you and your attorney to review all of the evidence in your case before preparing your defense. Some important questions are:
- Were there any witnesses to the incident and if so did they provide a statement?
- Did you provide any statements?
- Did you cause any property damage?
- What is the value of the damage to the property?
The United States Constitution and the Florida Constitution both guarantee that people be free from self-incrimination. In order for a person to give up their privilege against self-incrimination the person must do so freely voluntarily and knowingly and that is why a person is normally advised of their Miranda rights after arrest but prior to any questioning by a law enforcement officer. It is important for you to know if your privilege against self-incrimination was violated. If your privilege against self-incrimination was violated evidence in your case may be inadmissible. Some important questions to consider are:
- Were you questioned by a law enforcement officer after you were arrested?
- Did you make any statements that are harmful to your case?
- Were you read your Miranda rights?
Criminal Mischief Penalties
A conviction for criminal mischief can result in penalties in many different penalties. It is important for you to know what penalties you may be facing. Some of the penalties for a criminal mischief conviction may include:
- Time in Jail or Prison
- Community service
- Cost Of Investigation
- Cost Of Prosecution
- Court Costs
*Program fees and costs are subject to change without notice*
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