If you’ve been accused of or arrested for Criminal Damage to Property in Kansas, you need an experienced criminal lawyer to help you through it. Take advantage of our free consultation and make an informed decision about how you want to proceed. You have nothing to lose by calling. I’ll give you some free advice either way. Call now, 888-439-4244.
A charge of criminal damage to property is often the result of an outburst during a disagreement or domestic dispute, road rage incident, or vandalism. It also can be an element of a fraud charge if you deliberately damage something to get money back.
If you are being falsely accused of criminal damage to property or arson, or if you just made a mistake in an emotional moment and did something you regret, please contact me to find out how I can help you. Either way, I can fight for your rights, protect your interests against a hostile criminal justice system, and get you the best outcome in court. Even if you made a big mistake, you need and deserve fair treatment under Kansas law. Without an experienced defense lawyer, you are at the mercy of the system. And the truth is, they are not in the mercy business.
If you are facing crimes of arson or criminal damage in the state of Kansas you could be looking at serious penalties, including prison. And even a misdemeanor criminal damage to property offense conviction with just a fine and probation still leaves you with a permanent criminal record for the rest of your life. For a young person in particular, that charge on your record can seriously reduce future job opportunities, and follow you wherever you go. Criminal records are public, and increasingly searchable for free during common background checks.
You need to get the best Kansas defense lawyer you can find, even if you admit it was your fault. You deserve a second chance, and to be treated fairly. That’s what I do, in Kansas courts everyday. Even the guilty need an advocate in a hostile system. And that goes double for the falsely accused. The Kansas courts will be only to happy to sentence you to jail and other serious punishments. Call me to discuss your case today and let me help you relax just a little, knowing you are in good hands. Call me today at (888) 439-4244.
Criminal Damage to Property – Laws & Penalties
Criminal damage to property has to do with damages not relating to fire or explosives. If you injure, damage, deface, destroy or impair the use of any property belonging to another without their permission or do so in a way to defraud an insurer or lien holder, you may be charged with this offense.
The potential sentence for this crime depends on the value of the property involved. If the value of the damage is:
- Less than $1,000: you face Class B Misdemeanor charges and potential sentence of 6 months in jail and fines of $1,000.
- $1,000- $25,000: you face Level 9 felony charges and a potential sentence of up to 7 months for your first offense.
- More than $25,000: you face Level 7 felony charges and a potential 13 month prison sentence for your first offense.
If you have any prior convictions (even misdemeanors) it has the potential to greatly increase your potential sentence.
ref: Kansas Criminal Damage to Property Laws KSA 21-3720
Kansas Arson Laws & Penalties
Arson is one of the most serious property crimes in Kansas.
You may be charged and found guilty of arson if you do any of the following by fire or explosives:
- Damage a building or property that someone else has interest in without their consent,
- Damage a building or property intending to injure or defraud an insurance company or lien holder,
- Accidentally damage a building or property as a result of manufacturing or attempting to manufacture a controlled substance.
If the damage is done to property or building that is considered a “dwelling” (a home or place of residence), the offense is a Level 6 felony. A Level 6 felony has a potential sentence of up to 19 months in prison for a first time offender.
If the building or property damaged was not considered a dwelling, the offense drops to a severity Level 7 felony which has the potential sentence of 13 months for a first time offender.
Any prior offenses, including misdemeanors, that might be on your record increases this potential sentence.
ref: Kansas Arson Laws KSA 21-3718
When there is a person inside the structure or on the property burned, the crime of arson gets much more serious.
Aggravated arson is that which is committed upon a building or property that:
- Contains a person, or
- Results in great bodily harm or disfigurement to a firefighter or law enforcement officer in the course of fighting or investigating a fire.
If the arson is committed on a building or property that has a person present it is a Level 6 person felony. This means that with no criminal record you will face a potential sentence of up to 19 months.
If, however, the fire or arson puts the person(s) at substantial risk of bodily harm, it is sharply elevated to a Level 3 person felony which carries a potential prison sentence of 61 months even with no prior criminal convictions.
Committing the arson where a law enforcement officer or firefighter is involved is also a Level 3 person felony.
ref: Kansas Aggravated Arson Laws KSA 21-3719
How Do I Fight The Charges? Can I Win?
Yes, we can challenge the prosecution to prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt!
In Misdemeanor criminal damage to property charges, there may also be opportunities to get the criminal charges dismissed in return for restitution – that is, paying for the damages. For Felony cases, the stakes are very high, and the defense strategies complex. Often the defense hinges on proving that you were the person to commit the offense, which isn’t always easy if there are no witnesses. The sooner I can get on the case, the more I can dig into the facts and look for legal challenges to fight your case and win.
If you are charged with a serious crime such as these, don’t wait to contact an attorney. Call me now for my free defense consultation, and I’ll explain what you are up against, and how I can help you.
– Attorney Mark Hagen