While something like throwing eggs at a neighbor’s house, toilet papering a house, or doing something similar to their car might seem like harmless adolescent hijinks, these actions can seriously damage someone else’s property by cracking glass in a home window and damaging paint to exterior walls or car finishes.
Archambault Law represents clients accused of a misdemeanor or felony vandalism in Rhode Island, helping to find the best possible solutions for their needs. If you or a family member, such as a minor child, has been charged with vandalism, our firm can help.
The idea of vandalism often brings to mind a picture of a kid in a hooded sweatshirt, spray painting homes, fences, or public property, but vandalism is more than graffiti. This charge can extend to any destruction of or damage to personal or public property, including egging someone’s house or business, breaking mailboxes, or even keying a car.
And vandalism doesn’t stand alone either, if you are the co-owner of a piece of property, such as when married couples share a home, damage that was done to property can even tie into domestic violence. As with most criminal charges that include property destruction, the seriousness of the crime and the resulting punishment changes with the value of the affected asset. Breaking a dish in a domestic spat, where people themselves were not harmed, isn’t a serious crime in the eyes of the law.
But breaking out all of the windows in a home, whether you are part owner of that house, is more costly damage that then elevates charges to either a serious misdemeanor or even a felony.
You could be looking at any one, or combination, of punishments resulting from a vandalism charge. In cases of misdemeanor vandalism, punishments can extend to public service and paying for the cost to fix broken property. It’s often the case that convicted vandals are given probation and have their driver’s’ licenses suspended. Depending on the offense, the accused may be required to sign up for programs like anger management classes.
Felony vandalism, where damage to property exceeds $500, could mean jail time and significant fees, in addition to any of the above.
With a skilled criminal defense attorney in your corner, it’s possible to have less serious charges of vandalism dismissed entirely. If this is not possible, your legal team is of significant benefit to reduce charges and fines, with the goal being to keep you or a loved one our of jail.
If you have questions about defense strategies for a vandalism charge, contact Archambault Law for a consultation. It is always our goal to help our clients secure favorable outcomes for an allegation, whether misdemeanors or felonies.