Episode 3: How Am I Charged with Felony Criminal Mischief? I Just Damaged Some Property…

While the husband and wife are enjoying their vacation in the Pinellas County Jail, the babysitter is getting restless. She and her boyfriend have been fighting like cats and dogs and she has a gut feeling he might be seeing someone else…why not just do a little drive by to be sure? She loads up the toddlers in the SUV and heads to her boyfriend’s house. Whose white Jetta is that in the driveway?! Caught red handed! That dog…So what does she decide to do? Slash one of his tires of course! Well unfortunately, this is all captured on Ring video camera. She is arrested and put in the Monroe County Jail. She looks down at her paperwork and the charge reads Felony Criminal Mischief. Felony?! That tire is only worth $250 – that should be a first-degree misdemeanor. Sorry sweetie, remember that time you were convicted for a second-degree misdemeanor of criminal mischief when you purposely broke your neighbor’s lawn gnome? Well, this second arrest for criminal mischief is now a felony…

Under Florida Statute 806.13(1)(b)(4), if you have a prior conviction for criminal mischief (whether it was for a second-degree misdemeanor or first-degree misdemeanor), the second arrest for criminal mischief is enhanced to a felony no matter what the dollar amount of damage is.

It is important to note that:

  • If damage to property is $200 or less, it is a second-degree misdemeanor.
  • If damage is greater than $200 but less than $1000, it is a first-degree misdemeanor.
  • If damage is $1000 or greater, it is a third-degree felony
    • Also, a third-degree felony if it is your second arrest for criminal mischief after being previously convicted as stated above.

Hire an experienced attorney when you are faced with a property damage charge.

About the author : deVlaming & Rivellini P.A.