When you are facing charges for damage to or intrusion on property, you can be facing some harsh sentences if you are convicted. It is important you have someone on your side who knows the system and how to help.
The laws are complicated, but we can help with criminal offenses in Georgia that include:
- Criminal Damage to Property
Call us for a consultation about your case today.
The offense of arson is split into 3 categories dependant on the circumstances that surrounded the crime. While the definitions of the three degrees of arson can be somewhat confusing, the sentences are pretty cut and dry.
| 1st Degree
With fire or explosive, you cause damage to: someone else’s home, vehicle, watercraft, or building (which they have an interest in), your own insured dwellings or buildings, or someone else’s insured property when the purpose of the arson is to collect insurance money.
With fire or explosive you cause damage to any property not described above.
With fire or explosive you cause damage to someone else’s property without their consent, to insured property, or to property with the intent of defeating the rights of a co owner or spouse, where the value of damaged property is over $25.00.
Up to $50,000 in fines and 1-20 years in prison.
Up to $25,000 in fines and 1-10 years in prison.
Up to $10,000 in fines and 1-5 years in prison.
**You can also be charged with arson (as listed above) if you hire someone or assist someone in the actual burning/damage.**
There are two ways to commit the crime of criminal trespassing.
1. You commit trespassing and may be charged with a misdemeanor if you intentionally damage the property of another person, without their consent and the value of that property is less than $500.
2. You commit trespassing and may be charged with a misdemeanor if you enter the land or property of another person with the intention of doing something unlawful, or you enter someone else’s land or property after receiving notice that entry is not allowed, or you remain on another person’s property after being told to leave.
Criminal trespassing is a misdemeanor and is punishable by up to one year in prison and up to $1,000 in fines.
Criminal Damage to Property
Criminal damage to property is split into two degrees. What your sentence is depends largely on whether you are convicted of first or second degree criminal damage to property.
You commit first degree criminal damage to property if you manipulate property in a manner that it endangers human life, or interferes with any public utility, communications, or transportation. This includes manipulating public sewage, water, or gas.
If you are found guilty of criminal damage to property in the first degree (a felony), you will be sentenced to 1 to 10 years in prison.
You may be charged with criminal damage to property in the second degree if you damage someone else’s property by fire or explosives, or damage someone’s property where the damage is more than $500, or start a fire on someone else’s land.
If you are convicted of second degree criminal damage to property, which is also a felony, you face between 1 and 5 years in prison.
Burglary is committed when you enter the property of someone else with the intent of committing a felony or a theft. This could be that you are intending to find and steal jewelry or that you are intending on assaulting the occupants.
If this is your first burglary conviction you are facing a prison sentence of 1 to 20 years. If this is your second burglary conviction, you are facing potential sentence of more than 2 and less than 20 years. If this is your third or subsequent burglary conviction you may be sentenced to 5 to 20 years in prison.