Summary

A person is guilty of criminal mischief if he/she willfully and maliciously injures or damages any real or personal property belonging to another party.

Elements

In order to be convicted of criminal mischief, the state must prove that the defendant willfully and maliciously Injured or damaged the property in some way, without the property owner’s consent

Example

After being fired from his job, Jeff decided to spray paint the side of his former boss’ car in the parking lot of the office. Multiple eyewitnesses saw Jeff with the can of spray paint, and Jeff was charged with criminal mischief.

Maximum Penalty

Penalties for criminal mischief vary based on the dollar amount of damage inflicted on the other party’s property.

  • 2nd Degree Misdemeanor (for damage of $200 or less): punishment of up to 60 days in jail.
  • 1st Degree Misdemeanor (damage between $200-$1000): punishment of up to 1 year in jail.
  • 3rd Degree Felony (damage exceeding $1000): punishment of up to 5 years in jail.