The term “arson” refers to malicious damage or destruction of property by means of an explosive device or fire. If you are facing charges for arson, you should take them seriously because you can be sure the state of New York will. The penal code classifies arson as a crime against property, and a judge is unlikely to go easy on alleged arsonists because of the injuries and deaths their activities might have caused.
If you are facing criminal charges for arson, Darren DeUrso, Attorney at Law can help. Mr. DeUrso is a qualified criminal attorney in White Plains who may be able to devise a solid defense against your charges.
The legal system can be unpredictable, but a qualified lawyer can help you avoid making mistakes that might compromise your interests. Call Darren DeUrso today at 914-772-8614, and read on for more information about how New York classifies arson crimes:
- Arson in the Fifth Degree
According to New York State Law, someone is guilty of fifth-degree arson when he or she damages the property of another on purpose by starting a fire or explosion without the consent of the owner. This results in a class A misdemeanor.
- Arson in the Fourth Degree
A person commits arson in the fourth degree when he or she damages a motor vehicle or a building by intentionally causing an explosion or starting a fire. This is a class E felony.
- Arson in the Third Degree
A third-degree arson charge is a class C felony. This occurs when an individual intentionally damages a motor vehicle or a building by causing an explosion or starting a fire. The difference between arson in the fourth degree and arson in the third degree is that in the fourth degree, the individual intentionally started a fire but did not necessarily intend to damage property; in the fourth degree, an individual intentionally damaged property by starting a fire.
- Arson in the Second Degree
An individual is guilty of arson in the second degree when he or she intentionally damages a building or motor vehicle by the use of fire, and another person who is not participating in the crime is present at the scene. The defendant must know that another individual is present, or circumstances must indicate that it is a likely possibility. This is a class B felony.
- Arson in the First Degree
An individual is guilty of arson in the first degree when he or she intentionally damages a motor vehicle or building. For the offense to classify as arson in the first degree, an incendiary device that the defendant threw, propelled or placed at the scene must have caused the fire or explosion, which proceeded to cause serious physical injury to someone other than a participant. If the defendant started the fire with the expectation of a financial advantage in mind, it can also be a first-degree arson charge.
If you are facing criminal charges in New York, a qualified DWI lawyer can help. Call Darren DeUrso, Attorney at Law today at 914-772-8614 to arrange an initial consultation.