Criminal mischief charges in Arapahoe County, Colorado typically follow behavior of knowingly damaging or defacing someone’s property. Also known as vandalism, if the owner of the property doesn’t consent to the damage another person inflicts, criminal charges can result. Earlier this month, a well-known NFL wide receiver was arrested for vandalism after allegedly leaping on the hood of a vehicle. Anyone facing charges for damaging another’s property should consult a skilled criminal mischief defense attorney as soon as possible.
Criminal Mischief Laws in Aurora
C.R.S. 18-4-501 defines the violations of criminal mischief throughout the state of Colorado. A person commits this offense in Aurora, Centennial, or Littleton if they:
- knowingly damage,
- someone else’s property
Accidentally causing damage to another’s property is not criminal mischief. If your friend hands you their new smartphone asking you to hold it and you drop it damaging the screen, no crime has occurred. However, if after giving you the phone you intentionally throw it on the ground and parts break, criminal mischief charges could result. The key element in criminal mischief is the intentional conduct that causes damage.
We have many expensive items around us on a day-to-day basis including our car, computers, smartphones, and even wearable tech. Damaging someone’s smartwatch or wireless earbuds can be costly, both financially and criminally.
Is Criminal Mischief a Misdemeanor in Arapahoe County?
The consequences of a criminal mischief conviction in Arapahoe County depend on the value of the items damaged. Whenever the property value is under $1,000, a misdemeanor applies. Penalties can include:
- up to 18 months in county jail,
- fines of up to $5,000
However, when the value of the damaged property exceeds $1,000, felony charges apply. This can mean years in the Colorado Department of Corrections and six-figure fines, not to mention the ramifications of a felony on your record.
Arapahoe County Criminal Mischief Defense Attorney
Anyone accused of criminal mischief in Arapahoe County has the right to raise legal defenses to the charges against them. Consulting an experienced defense attorney who can analyze your case and apply those defenses that are most applicable is essential. Perhaps the damage was accidental or the value of the damaged property isn’t accurate. Nevertheless, contact our office today for a free initial consultation. We will look over your unique case and recommend next steps, all while prioritizing your best possible outcome.
We offer same-day jail visits, affordable fees, and flexible payment plans for those facing criminal mischief accusations throughout Colorado.
If you or someone you know has been charged with criminal mischief in Colorado, be smart. Contact the strategic criminal lawyers at O’Malley and Sawyer, LLC at 303-731-0719. Together, we can protect your future.
Photo by Dave Adamson