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What is criminal damage?

You are charged with criminal damage what does this mean?

Examples of criminal damage include arson, forced entry into a property, graffiti on a public building, and destruction/damage of items belonging to another. Even if the items damaged can be repaired, individual(s) can still be prosecuted.

Such a charge can be subject to penalties including fines and possible imprisonment.

The offences of criminal damage are set out in the Criminal Damage Act 1971. The Authorities will need to establish the following elements to proceed:

  • The exact damage that was caused
  • The damaged property belonged to another
  • The damage was caused without lawful excuse

You will need to consider your defence if charged with criminal damage.

  • The property belonged to you
  • You had permission from the owner to damage/destroy the property
  • You needed to damage the property as you felt harm would come to someone and by doing so prevented loss of life / the unlawful detention of an individual(s)
  • You did not commit this offence as you did not damage any property

Criminal damage can also be deemed as committed recklessly, which means there was no intention to cause criminal damage. A person acts recklessly with respect to:

  • A circumstance when they are aware of a risk that exists or will exist
  • In the circumstances known to them, it was unreasonable to take that risk

An example of reckless damage could be throwing/kicking a ball to someone – you miss them and end up damaging someone’s property. Is this just an accident? Or did you appreciate you could damage the property but didn’t move a safe distance away? There is certainly a fine line at investigation.

If you have been charged with criminal damage then contact Noble Solicitors as soon as possible who will refer you to one of our specialist Criminal Solicitors who will guide you through your rights in this situation.

Noble Solicitors – Fighting For You - Always Protecting Your Rights.
07000 818283

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Noble Solicitors – Fighting For You
Always Protecting Your Rights.
07000 81 82 83