You could be charged with the most common property damage crime in Tennessee, vandalism, if the prosecution has probable cause that you knowingly and deliberately damaged someone else’s property. The charge you face for this offense and the subsequent sentence depend largely on the value of the damage done.

Value/Damage Vandalism Charge Potential Sentence
Less than $500 Class A misdemeanor Up to 1 year in jail and $2,500 in fines
$500 to $1,000 Class E Felony 1 to 6 years in prison and $3,000 in fines
$1,000 to $10,000 Class D Felony 2 to 12 years in prison and $5,000 in fines
$10,000 to $60,000 Class C Felony 3 to 15 years in prison and $10,000 in fines
More than $60,000 Class B Felony 8 to 30 years in prison and $25,000 in fines

Ref: TCA 39-14-408

Reckless Burning

You can be charged with this offense if you recklessly start a fire on someone else’s land or property. This includes starting a fire on your own property but negligently allowing it to spread to the property of another.

This offense is a Class A misdemeanor that carries a potential one year jail term and $2,500 in fines.

Ref: TCA 39-14-304


Arson is defined by Tennessee statute as knowingly damaging any structure by fire without consent or with the intent to defraud an insurer.

Arson is a Class C felony which carries a potential penalty of 3 to 6 years in prison for someone with little or no criminal history. If you have an extensive criminal history you could face as much as 15 years for this offense.

Ref: TCA 39-14-301

Aggravated Arson

If you commit arson on an occupied structure of if the arson leads to serious bodily injury of a firefighter or emergency worker in the line of duty.

This serious offense is classified as a Class A felony. Class A felonies carry a potential sentence of 15 to 25 years in prison for someone who has a limited criminal history. However, for people with an extensive criminal history, this offense could lead to 60 years behind bars.

Ref: TCA 39-14-302