Criminal Mischief

The offense of criminal mischief involves the damage of property through various means

  • intentionally, recklessly or negligently damaging another's property by use of fire, explosives or other dangerous means as defined in section 3302(a)
  • Intentionally or recklessly tamper with another's property so as to endanger person or other property
  • Intentionally or recklessly causing another person to suffer financial loss by deception or threat
  • Intentionally defacing or damaging public property or another person's property with graffiti by use of aerosol spray can, broad-tipped permanent marker or similar other marking device
  • Intentionally damaging another person's property
  • Intentionally defacing personal, private or public property by shooting a paintball gun

The grading of a criminal mischief offense generally depends on the value of the property damaged

  • Where an intentional act causes damage in excess of $5,000 OR a substantial interruption or impairment of public communication, transportation, supply of water, gas or power, or other public service, the offense is a felony of the third degree with a maximum sentence of seven years of incarceration and a $15,000 fine.
  • Where an intentional acts causes damage in excess of $1,000, the offense is a misdemeanor of the second degree with a maximum sentence of 2 years of incarceration and $5,000 fine.
  • Where an intentional acts causes damage in excess of $500 OR in excess of $150 for damage caused by graffiti, the offense is a misdemeanor of the third degree with a maximum sentence of 1 year of incarceration and a $2,500 fine.
  • In all other cases, the offense is a summary with a maximum sentence of 90 days of incarceration and a $300 fine.

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.