3 Things You Might Not Know About Property Crime

Real Estate by  Mashum Mollah 30 March 2021 Last Updated Date: 15 June 2021

3 Things You Might Not Know About Property Crime

Property crime is an umbrella term that covers a wide range of criminal offenses, ranging from the minor to the extremely serious.

A property crime is defined as any offense that involves taking or destroying property that legally belongs to another person with the sole intention of depriving them of using it, and it covers everything from petty theft to armed robbery and extortion.

Given how serious property crimes can be, it is essential that anyone charged with this kind of offense have a criminal defense lawyer who is dedicated to winning the toughest cases on their side to ensure that a single lapse of judgment doesn’t come to define an entire life.

1. ‘Mischief’ is Can be a Serious Offense:

Mischief may not sound like a big deal it can be, especially for young people. When we think about property crimes, we tend to think of the big ones — things like theft, burglary, and breaking and entering. But there are a host of other offenses that are also considered property crimes, including arson and vandalism.

Of these, mischief is one of the most misunderstood: any of the following offenses is considered mischief under the law:

  • Wilfully or intentionally damaging or destroying another person’s property
  • Rendering property dangerous, useless, or inoperative through your actions
  • Interfering with the legal use of someone else’s property
  • Interfering with a person’s ability to use, enjoy, or operate their property

As this list makes clear, mischief covers a lot of things. It can also lead to serious criminal charges.

2. Aggravating Factors Make a Big Difference:

If someone is convicted of a property offense, the court will take a range of different factors into consideration when sentencing.

There is a significant difference between stealing a candy bar and robbing a bank or burning a house down, and the law determines the severity of a property offense by looking at aggravating factors like:

  • Previous criminal record
  • Amount of damage
  • Harm to victim
  • Use of force/weapon

Minor property crimes are often punished with fines, community service, or probation rather than jail, but if a lot of aggravating factors are present, it can lead to a much more serious sentence.

3. Mandatory Sentencing May Apply:

Some jurisdictions use what is called ‘mandatory minimum sentencing for certain kinds of serious offenses. While mandatory minimum sentencing is considered by some to be a controversial and counter-productive approach to criminal justice, depending on where you live you could find yourself facing a minimum jail sentence of 5-10 years for certain property crimes.

These sentences can obtain even in the face of mitigating circumstances — for example, if a person set a fire intending to do a small amount of damage but it got wildly out of control.

Property crime is a complex aspect of criminal law, but it is important for people to understand that arson, mischief, and petty theft can lead to serious repercussions.

Fortunately for those charged with such offenses, a criminal defense lawyer can help you build a strong defense that can result in acquittal, reduction of sentence, or having the charges dropped altogether.

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Mashum Mollah

Mashum Mollah is the man behind TheDailyNotes. He loves sharing his experiences on popular sites- Mashum Mollah, Blogstellar.com etc.

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