Defacing public property is a crime. Unfortunately, everyone has their own definition of what it means to deface, or vandalize public property. While their definition may be partially correct, it is typically not all-encompassing. Here is everything you need to know about defacing public property.
What Does it Mean to Deface Public Property?
Defacing public property means that someone knowingly and purposely damages property that does not belong to them. There are many different ways in which a person can deface property. Some of the most common methods include painting it, writing on it, etching into it, spray painting or graffiti, slashing tires, breaking windows, knocking down signs, or egging the property. Some of the most common types of property that are defaced include bathroom walls, mirrors, fences, buildings, park equipment, benches, tires, windows, street signs and cars.
What Types of Charges Can You Face For Defacing Public Property?
In the state of Georgia, if you vandalize property, you are typically charged with one of two crimes. These crimes are criminal trespass and criminal damage to property. Criminal trespass is a misdemeanor charge and someone is typically charged with this crime if they have caused $500 or less of damage. Criminal damage to property is a felony charge. You can be charged with second-degree criminal damage to property of $500 or more worth of damage is done. You can be charged with first-degree criminal damage to property if human life was endangered and/or you caused damage to public services, such as public transportation, public sewer lines, or a public water source.
What Are the Penalties Associated With Defacing Public Property?
Any time you are charged with a crime, whether it be a misdemeanor or a felony, you now have a criminal record. If you are found guilty, that criminal record can prevent you from holding certain jobs, from traveling to certain countries, and some apartment complexes can even deny you residence due to your criminal record. You can face up to one year in jail for a misdemeanor, one to five years in jail or prison for a second-degree felony, and one to ten years in prison for a first-degree felony. In addition to all of this, you will likely be ordered to pay fines, restitution and court costs.
Defacing both public and private property that does not belong to you is a crime and an arrestable offense. If you or a loved one has been arrested for this, you may be looking to post bail and get out of jail as quickly as possible. At Free at Last Bail Bonds, we understand the importance and urgency of reuniting families. If you or a loved one needs our services, we are here for you 24 hours a day at 404-577-2245.