You may perceive car vandalism as a small problem, not really a crime, with low costs to fix. But it’s actually much more serious. Every year millions of dollars are paid in insurance claims related to car vandalism. There can be serious consequences for this type of crime, which we’ll cover in this article.
Car vandalism refers to when someone defaces or destroys another person’s car without their permission. Types of car vandalism could include slashing tires, keying the car, smashing windows, or even egging the vehicle. Vandalism, under state laws, is a crime. Other legal terms that may be used are criminal damage, malicious damage, or malicious trespass.
For the police to arrest someone for the criminal charge of car vandalism charges, they need to have enough information for an arrest. There are different parts, or elements, to car vandalism. First is physical damage, that might be permanent but also might not be serious enough to destroy property. The second element for something to qualify as car vandalism is that it’s owned by someone else. It wouldn’t qualify as vandalism if you destroy your own car, for example. And the third element of car vandalism is that it must be intentional. If you accidentally damage someone’s car, you’ll likely be liable to pay for it, but it won’t be vandalism.
Court Cam: Man SPITS on Judge, Then Starts Jail Riot | A&E
California Penal Code Section 242 PC
To prove that someone is guilty of battery, prosecutors must prove that the person “willfully and unlawfully touched the other person in a harmful or offensive manner.”
Clearly, spitting on someone on purpose is a “willful” act. While it may not seem like but is it really an unlawful “use of force” or “violence,” it can definitely be a “touching” that is “harmful or offensive”
It will be the rare incident of spitting that will actually cause the “victim” any physical harm, but that is irrelevant for purposes of whether a criminal battery has been committed. You can still be convicted of misdemeanor battery even if there is no physical harm or injury and face up to six months in county jail and a fine of up to $2,000 dollars.
However, if you angrily direct your saliva towards a police officer, you could potentially face much more significant penalties. “Battery of a peace officer” under Penal Code sections 243(b) and 243(c)(2) can lead to a county jail term of up to an entire year, again, even if the officer wasn’t in any way hurt or injured.
A former Los Angeles prosecutor, attorney Neil Shouse graduated with honors from UC Berkeley and Harvard Law School (and completed additional graduate studies at MIT). He has been featured on CNN, Good Morning America, Dr Phil, The Today Show and Court TV. Mr Shouse has been recognized by the National Trial Lawyers as one of the Top 100 Criminal and Top 100 Civil Attorneys.
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Section 14. Whoever expectorates or spits upon any public sidewalk, or upon any place used exclusively or principally by pedestrians, or, except in receptacles provided for the purpose, in or upon any part of any city or town hall, any court house or court room, any public library or museum, any church or theatre, any lecture or music hall, any mill or factory, any hall of any tenement building occupied by five or more families, any school building, any ferry boat or steamboat, any railroad car or elevated railroad car, except a smoking car, any street railway car, any railroad or railway station or waiting room, or on any track, platform or sidewalk connected therewith, and included within the limits thereof, shall be punished by a fine of not more than twenty dollars.
Most Common Types of Car Vandalism
There are different types of car vandalism. Here are the most common:
If the person or persons who vandalized your car are caught, there are different penalties. Most states will categorize damage that is less than $500 as a misdemeanor. A felony will be applied to any damage that is $500 or more. The amount can differ from state to state which some states saying that $250 is a misdemeanor. However, in other states, any car vandalism is a felony. Also, every state has its own penalties that cover vandalism. Below are the most common punishments for vandalism:
Is spitting on someone’s car a crime in California?
Is spitting a criminal offence in the UK?
Is spitting disorderly conduct?