Malicious Injury to Property in Creek County is either a felony or a misdemeanor. In the fall of 2016, Oklahoma passed two state questions: SQ 780 and SQ 781. First, SQ 780 reclassified simple drug possession and property crimes to misdemeanors instead of felonies. Consequently, SQ 781 requires the Oklahoma Office of Management and Enterprise Services (OMES) to use actual data to calculate savings from the reclassification and re-invest this money into rehabilitative programs. OSBI estimates that approximately 100,000 vandalism—or malicious injury to property—crimes occur each year. As you can see, malicious injury is facing significant changes and attention in the legal sphere.
Defining Malicious Injury to Property
How to define “malicious injury” is under Title 21 §1760. This basically states that anyone who maliciously (or intentionally) maims, defaces, or destroys anyone else’s property is committing malicious injury. For example, some malicious injury property crimes would be graffiti, egging homes, trenching a person’s lawn, and even breaking lawn decorations and windows.
Legal Consequences of Malicious Injury
In light of the new penalties under SQ 780, Oklahoma categorizes malicious
injury to property into three different brackets.
- Property Damage < $1,000: This is a misdemeanor offense if it is your first or second offense. It may come with some community service requirements and minimal fines $500 or less.
- Property Damage >$1,000: Property damage over $1,000 is a felony. It does not matter if this is a first or second offense, it is automatically a felony. You can face jail time and fines, plus the offense will remain on your permanent record.
- Third Malicious Injury Offense: If you commit malicious injury three times, the value of the property damaged does not matter. At this point you will face felony charges. Again, you face fines and jail time plus a blemish on your permanent record.
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It is important to note that the consequences above are criminal in nature. The victims may also bring a civil suit to recover damages. As a result and depending on the property you damage, the suit could end up costing you thousands.
Call Creek County Attorneys
Our attorneys understand that malicious injury is often the result of a bad or impulsive decision. Having a felony on your record for this though, is a harsh punishment. Thus, we not only understand the gravity of the situation, but will fight for your best interests. Call us today for a free consultation.