Criminal Mischief 2C:17-3 – Criminal Mischief in NJ – NJ Criminal Mischief Charges – NJ Criminal Mischief Penalties
“Criminal mischief charges can be avoided. Here is an example of a criminal mischief case that I managed to have dismissed.”
No two cases are alike. While this one might not be similar to your situation, there are typically loopholes and ways to challenge every case. Some of these methods can be found in our Top 5 Ways To Beat A Criminal Charge series. In any event, researching your charge is a good way to start fighting back.
Please feel free to call us for a free consultation about your case. The Tormey Firm is a composed of a team of criminal defense attorneys and current NJ prosecutors, fighting on your behalf.
I represented a client in the Morristown Municipal Court who was charged with criminal mischief in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:17-3. Criminal mischief can be graded as a third degree, fourth degree, or disorderly persons offense in New Jersey depending on the circumstances of the alleged offense and the amount of the damage done.
In this case, the defendant was charged with a disorderly persons offense because the damage done was $500.00 or less.
The defendant had no prior criminal history. A disorderly persons offense in New Jersey, if convicted, leads to a $1,000.00 fine and up to six (6) months in the county jail. In this case, the defendant was out in Morristown, had a few drinks, and lost his keys.
When he came back to his apartment building he broke the window to his apartment so that he could get inside from the cold and go to bed. However, it turned out that he broke the window to his next door neighbors apartment and ended up in the wrong apartment.
The defendant paid for the window to be fixed and apologized to both the police and his neighbor. His neighbor did not want to press charges and Mr. Tormey was able to convince the prosecutor and the judge to dismiss the criminal mischief charge against him. In fact, the State would have had a difficult time proving criminal mischief because the “mens rea” or state of mind element of the criminal offense was not present.
When the defendant broke the window he thought he was breaking his own window so he could enter his own apartment. To break your own window is not criminal mischief. However, Mr. Tormey was able to avoid that issue at trial and the case was dismissed against the defendant. This was a great result for the client and the firm.
Call The Tormey Law Firm for a free consultation with experienced criminal defense attorneys, and current NJ prosecutors.
Our firm is absolutely dedicated to providing the best criminal defense for your legal issues, and we are available for free consultations regarding your criminal matter. We are happy to talk to you about the exact strategies that we will use to fight your case. Feel free to call us any time: (201) 556-1571