Criminal Mischief Defense Attorney for Denver Colorado
Criminal Mischief is committed when someone knowingly damages personal property belonging to someone else. It includes property owned by one or more persons or property owned jointly with another, such as a spouse or partner.
Philip M. Smith • Attorney • Denver, Colorado
Criminal Mischief Lawyer
Free Consultations • Call (303) 333-8900 • Email
We have all seen the graffiti or tagging on new, old or abandoned buildings, dumpsters, and highways. This is a common criminal mischief municipal ordinance violation but may be heard in County or District court for misdemeanor, felony or if additional criminal offenses are added to the case. If the act of tagging or painting graffiti becomes repeat behavior or a physical addiction to inhalants, a defendant may be looking at more serious consequences.
Also, the charge of Criminal Mischief could be related to Domestic Violence. What started out as playful romping with a loved one escalates to an argument, ultimately ending with an expensive television, furniture or art work being damaged or destroyed. Additional criminal charges may be added to this single incident. It is likely one of you will be arrested and charged with domestic violence, criminal mischief and more.
Philip M. Smith has over 35 years of legal experience
as a judge, district attorney, and a private attorney
practicing in all areas of criminal defense law.
Criminal mischief, like burglary and robbery, requires the prosecution to prove that the defendant knew what he was doing. Only theft requires proof that the defendant intended to deprive the owner of his property. The property must be owned by one or more people, be public, private or commercial property or be owned jointly with another. Restitution is measured by the market value of the property or the actual cost of repair if that is less than replacement. Self defense is not usually a defense to criminal mischief.
If You Are Charged with Criminal Mischief
First, DO NOT discuss this arrest with ANYONE except your attorney. Family, friends or coworkers may be called as witnesses. If you are being investigated or charged with Criminal Mischief in the Denver Metro area, make no statements to law enforcement and DO NOT make a confession expecting any leniency. Law enforcement may try to solve similar crimes by gaining your confession. I will initiate contact with law enforcement in your behalf.
As with all criminal charges, it is critical for me to obtain as much information about the incident as quickly as possible. The sooner I can get started the faster I can achieve the best resolution for you in this criminal allegation. I will speak with you about the circumstances leading to your arrest. Anything you share with me or my staff is completely confidential. Once I have been retained, I will be able to examine the evidence that has been collected by law enforcement and the prosecution to see if it is admissible and should be suppressed if it was collected improperly.
Call my office today for a free confidential consultation
Attorney Philip M. Smith
As your Colorado criminal defense lawyer, I work to diminish prior offenses or call attention to a good record to ensure you receive the most favorable disposition possible regardless if this matter results in a plea bargain or goes to trial. I negotiate with the prosecutor to gain the best possible resolution to your criminal case. Depending on the severity of the charges, I use private investigators, forensic experts and other experts to review the evidence collected, secure a value of the property damaged to support your case. I seek the most desirable disposition options such as a dismissal, obtaining a Deferred Judgment or possibly the Diversion program which are eligible for Sealing upon completion of the terms of probation.
Criminal Mischief Possible Penalties
I want to help you get the best resolution to your case but you need to know exactly what you are facing if you take a guilty plea. The following sentence penalties for Criminal Mischief are:
- Class 2 Misdemeanor (M2) if aggregate damage to property in a single event is less than $500 market value carries a jail term of up to 12 months and restitution.
- Class 1 Misdemeanor (M1) if aggregate damage to property in a single event is between $500-$1000 market value carries a jail term of up to 18 months and restitution.
- Class 4 Felony (F4) if aggregate damage to property in a single event is between $1000-$20,000 market value carries a presumptive sentence of up to 6 years prison and restitution.
- Class 3 Felony (F3) if aggregate damage to property in a single event is between $20,000 or more market value carries a presumptive sentence of up to 12 years prison and restitution.
Criminal Mischief convictions in Colorado are not eligible for Sealings. Arrest, charges, and conviction information is available to law enforcement, military, government agencies and the public. Landlords and employers will not risk their property or the property of their tenants and employees by renting or hiring a person who they see as a threat because of your charge or conviction.
If you need a criminal defense lawyer for your Criminal Mischief criminal charge, or if you have questions about criminal charges,I encourage you to contact me, Philip M. Smith, Denver Criminal Defense Lawyer, 303-333-8900 today for a free and confidential initial consultation.