Arson and related offenses

Arson endangering persons

Arson is a felony of the first degree and punishable by 20 years of incarceration and a $25,000 fine if a person intentionally starts a fire or causes an explosion or aids another person to do so and

  • thereby recklessly places another person in danger of death or bodily injury, including those persons fighting the fire, or
  • commits the acts with the purpose of destroying or damaging an inhabited building or structure of another

Arson of Historic Resource

Arson of a historic resource is a felony of the second degree and punishable by 10 years of incarceration and a $25,000 fine. This offense requires that, with the intent of destroying or damaging a history resource belonging to another, a person intentionally starts a fire or explosion OR aids or pays another to do so.

Arson endangering property

Arson is a felony of the second degree and punishable by 10 years of incarceration and a $25,000 fine if a person intentionally starts a fire or explosion and

  • commits the act with the intent of destroying or damaging a building or unoccupied structure of another, or
  • recklessly places an inhabited building or occupied structure belonging to another in danger of damage or destruction, or
  • commits the acts with the intent of destroying or damaging any property to collect insurance for such loss

Recklessly burning or causing explosions is a felony of the third degree and punishable by 7 years of incarceration and a $15,000 fine if a person intentionally starts a fire or aids another person in doing so and thereby recklessly

  • places an uninhabited building in danger of damage or destruction
  • places another's personal property with a value greater than $5,000 or another's motor vehicle or airplane in danger of damage or destruction

But it is a summary offense punishable by 90 days of incarceration and a $300 fine if a person intentionally or recklessly starts a fire with the intent of endangering a person or property or another, regardless of whether or not any damage occurs.

It is a felony of the third degree and punishable by 7 years of incarceration and a $15,000 fine if a person possesses, manufactures or transports any explosive or incendiary materials with the intent to use them or provide them to someone else with the purpose of committing an arson.

An arson conviction can have serious consequences. It is very important that you speak to an attorney about how best to handle your case. Call our criminal defense lawyers in Reading, PA at 610-372-5128 or submit your case on the "Ask an attorney" link.