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Colorado Lawyer - Criminal Mischief, C.R.S. 18-4-501

In Jefferson, Arapahoe, or Adams County, Colorado, Criminal Mischief (C.R.S. 18-4-501) is also referred to as the Property Damage or Vandalism statute. How much damage determines which class of crime will be charged. If there is less than $500.00 damage, it will be charged as a class 2 misdemeanor. However, if the damage is $20,000.00 or more, Criminal Mischief is charged as a much more serious class 3 felony. These are the extremes, and there are varying levels of charges in between.

This is one of those crimes that will often get charged along with other crimes. For instance, I was reading an article just today about a Denver, Colorado man that was being charged with Domestic Violence (C.R.S. 18-6-800.3), False Imprisonment (C.R.S. 18-3-303), Third Degree Assault (C.R.S. 18-3-204), and Criminal Mischief (C.R.S. 18-4-501) all over a single altercation with his girlfriend. The article said that he and his girlfriend got into an argument after watching a ballgame. As she was driving away, the man threw a rock at her car. The rock not only injured his (former?) girlfriend, but it broke her car window.

Criminal Mischief is charged as a separate crime when someone's property is damaged. Like in the article I mentioned, since a window was broken, the charge was added. It is important to remember that if you have an argument with your spouse and you decide to take your anger out on "your own" dishes, you may be charged with this crime, simply because the dishes may actually belong to both of you. Co-ownership of property qualifies it as "property of another".

It is common for a juvenile in Aurora or Lakewood to be charged with Criminal Mischief when they are arrested for vandalizing property. Kids will often get in trouble when playing pranks or horsing around. Often a night on the town with a can of spray paint will turn into a nightmare for a high achieving student and her parents. It's not just the fine or the possibility of doing community service that creates a problem. It is usually the issues surrounding a criminal record that matter the most.

If someone in your family has been charged in Weld or Douglas County, or anywhere in Colorado, with Criminal Mischief, you should call the O'Malley Law Office, P.C. as soon as possible. We know how to talk with prosecutors and how to bring about the best possible result in your case. So, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and call us at 303-731-0719. Together we can protect your future.

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