Indiana

The statute governing criminal mischief, the most commonly charged property damage offense in Indiana, is extensive and somewhat confusing. There are several classifications of criminal mischief, each carrying a different potential sentence.

Indiana Criminal Mischief Laws & Penalties

Class C felony Criminal mischief

Criminal mischief is charged as a Class C felony when the prosecution has probable cause to believe you recklessly, knowingly, or intentionally damaged a church, school or community center, or property adjacent to or contained within any of these and the damage is valued at more than $2,500.

Class C felonies are punishable by 2 to 8 years in prison and fines of $10,000.

Class D Felony Criminal Mischief

Your criminal mischief charge may be a Class D felony if you recklessly, knowingly, or intentionally damage a church, school or community center, or property adjacent or contained within any of these and the damage done is between $250 and $2,500.

This charge also applies if you knowingly, recklessly or intentionally damage or deface someone else’s property without their consent and the damage is:

  • Valued at more than $2,500,
  • Causes a substantial interruption or impairment of utility services,
  • To a public record or concerns data relating to a sex offender required to register,
  • To a law enforcement animal,
  • Causes a substantial interruption or impairment of work in a food processing facility or in a scientific research facility.

Class D felonies carry a potential sentence of 6 months to 3 years in prison and fines reaching $10,000.

Class A misdemeanor Criminal Mischief

You could be facing Class A Misdemeanor charges if you recklessly, knowing, or intentionally damage a church, school or community center, or property adjacent to or contained within any of these and the damage done is less than $250.

You may also be charged with Class A misdemeanor criminal mischief of the prosecution has reason to believe that you knowingly, recklessly, or intentionally damage or defaced someone else’s property without their consent and the damage is:

  • valued at between $250 and $2,500,
  • done to a moving vehicle,
  • committed on a train, railroad car, or equipment belonging to the rail company, or
  • was committed by the use of paint or other markings.

Class A misdemeanors are punishable by a maximum of one year in jail and $5,000 in fines.

Class B Misdemeanor Criminal mischief

You could face Class B misdemeanor charges if you knowingly, recklessly, or intentionally damage or deface someone else’s property without their consent and it does not qualify under any of the other classifications.

Class B misdemeanors carry a potential sentence of up to 180 days in jail and fines reaching $1,000.

Ref: Indiana Code ยง35-43-1-2

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