If you have been charged with Arson in Orange County for setting fire to a building, forest land, or other property, you should contact Arson Lawyer Orange County to get in touch with a law firm that works with a team of professionals on the matter and that knows how to handle those particular kinds of Arson charges. In Orange County, Arson is a wobbler so it is divided into two degrees, Felony Arson and Misdemeanor Arson. Arson is usually committed when someone sets fire to a building, forest land, or other property.
Arson Lawyer Orange County
First, let Arson Lawyers in Orange County give you the relevant law. The relevant portion of the law that is applicable to Arson in Orange County is summarized below. However, the full text of the Arson laws in Orange County can be found in California Penal Code Section 451 and 452. To prove that the defendant is guilty of Arson, the Prosecutor must prove that:
- The defendant set fire to or burned,
- a structure, forest land, or other property,
- willfully and maliciously, or
However, if the prosecutor can the following facts then the penalties can be more severe.
- The structure burned was an inhabited dwelling
- The fire caused great bodily injury to another person
The Arson laws in Orange County can be confusing to a defendant charged with a crime. Arson Lawyers in Orange County knows the ins and outs of these particular criminal charges and we may be able to help you get your case dismissed or lowered to a lesser offense, such as unlawfully causing a fire or trespassing.
Reducing an Arson in Orange County
Circumstances may allow the Prosecutor to charge you with Misdemeanor Arson, rather than Felony Arson. This will depend on the facts of your case and whether you have any prior convictions. Arson Orange County may be able to show that your Felony Arson charge should be reduced to a Misdemeanor Arson charge. Call today for a free and confidential initial consultation. We can go over the facts of your case and help you understand the possible outcomes, and possible strategies for successfully getting your case reduced or dismissed. Arson lawyers Orange County aggressively challenges the facts of the case. We may be able to get an Investigator to obtain contradictory statements from witnesses. If we can convince the court that the witnesses are not credible, your Arson charges may be reduced and you could avoid jail or prison.
Penalties for Arson in Orange County Arson in Orange County - Possible Outcomes
Arson is generally a felony. However, in some circumstances it is also a wobbler, meaning that it can usually be charged as a misdemeanor or felony. Misdemeanor Arson is punishable by a maximum of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine. Felony Arson may result in a sentence ranging between sixteen months and nine years in prison. However, depending on the facts of the case, certain convictions will carry even more prison time. Willful and malicious arson is always a felony and it carries a strike. Arson of personal property carries a prison term up to 3 years. Arson of forest land carries a prison term up to 6 years. Arson that causes an inhabited dwelling to burn carries a prison term up to 8 years. Arson that causes great bodily injury carries a prison term up to 9 years. Reckless arson is a misdemeanor. Misdemeanor Arson is punishable by a maximum of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine. However, reckless arson can be a felony if a structure or forest is burned, or if someone sustains great bodily injury. Additionally, certain types of arson can carry a $50,000 fine. Arson generally carries a fine up to $10,000. A conviction for arson will require the defendant to register as an arson offender. As detailed below, your case may be reduced to a lower crime, or your case may be dismissed.
Arson Defenses in Orange County
Our Arson lawyers in Orange County knows the defenses that may help get your Arson charge dismissed. There are a number of defenses to Arson in Orange County, however the applicability of those defenses depends on the facts of your case. For example, as you can see above, the Prosecutor has a lot to prove. We may be able to show that any number of the requirements of the law aren’t met. For instance, we may be able to show that, although you started a fire, it was an accident. Fires start naturally, or through freak occurrence, and criminal culpability should not attach. Also, we may be able to fight the prosecution’s description of the property. If we can show the property is not of the type that is required by law then the charges against you may be dismissed. Another common defense is that the police did something wrong while investigating your case. For instance, if the Officer who stopped you did not have reasonable suspicion to stop and detain you then Arson lawyers Orange County may be able to get your case dismissed. Also, if you were detained by Officers who used an unreasonable amount of force then that may be a defense in your case. Also, if you have been charged with multiple counts of Arson, we may be able to get all of your charges consolidated into one charge, with one penalty.
Arson Reduced Charges in Orange County
When the prosecution case is strong, sometimes the best tactic is to try to work out a plea deal with the Prosecutor. Arson lawyers Orange County may be able to help you get your Arson charge reduced to a lesser charge. Arson lawyers Orange County may be able to get your Arson charge, and the penalties reduced to those penalties associated with Trespass, Disturbing the Peace, Unlawfully Causing a Fire, or Misdemeanor Arson.
Arson Prior Convictions in Orange County
If you have prior convictions for Arson, then you may face increased penalties in your current Arson case. Arson lawyers Orange County aggressively challenges any prior convictions. For instance, if your prior Arson conviction occurred more than 10 years ago, or if it occurred in another state, then we may be able to get those prior convictions stricken. If we can successfully strike your prior convictions, then you will only face 1st time Arson penalties. Call Arson lawyers Orange County today to see how your prior convictions may impact your current Arson charge.
What Should I do about a Arson charge in Orange County?
Contact Arson lawyers Orange County today for a free and confidential consultation regarding your case. We will look at your personal history and the facts surrounding the charges against you, and then we can discuss possible outcomes with you at no cost.