Did you recently damage someone else’s property and now you’re
being slapped with criminal mischief charges? Or, are you a parent whose
son or daughter vandalized someone else’s property and now he or
she is facing criminal charges for what they did?
If your answer is “yes” to either question, you’ll be
interested in learning more about
criminal mischief under
Section 28.03 of the Texas Penal Code. Under Sec. 28.03, you commit the offense of “criminal
mischief” when you do the following without the owner’s express consent:
- Intentionally or knowingly damage or destroy their property,
- Intentionally or knowingly tamper with their property to the extent where
you cause monetary loss or a substantial inconvenience for the owner, or
- Intentionally and knowingly make drawings, paintings, markings, inscriptions,
or carvings on the owner’s property.
Criminal mischief can be charged as a state jail felony, a Class A, B,
or C misdemeanor depending on the amount of financial loss. In other words,
the costlier the damage to the person’s property, the more serious
the penalties. Criminal mischief is a:
state jail felony if the financial loss is $2,500 or more but under $30,000.
Class A misdemeanor if the financial loss is $750 or more but under $2,500.
Class B misdemeanor if the financial loss is $100 or more but under $750.
Class C misdemeanor if the financial loss is under $100.
While the penalties for criminal mischief vary widely, we’re going
to discuss the penalties for a Class B misdemeanor since many of these
offenses involve less than $750 of damage. Suppose “Joe” destroyed
his neighbor’s $300 bicycle because he was upset at him.
Class B misdemeanor, Joe would face up to a $2,000, or up to six months in jail, or both for
destroying his neighbor’s bike. As you can see, the penalties for
criminal mischief can be severe, even if you didn't intend to do so
much damage at the time.
Facing criminal charges in Plano or Dallas?
Contact The Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC to work with a top-rated defense team!