Flint Property Crimes Lawyer
Property crimes consist of willfully damaging, destroying, or taking property in an illegal manner. You might imagine that you can only get into trouble for doing this with someone else’s property, but in fact, you can face criminal charges for destroying your own property under certain conditions. Whether you’re charged with arson, vandalism, or home invasion, you’ll need an experienced Flint property crimes lawyer by your side to help you avoid the devastating consequences of a criminal conviction.
You may face criminal penalties only if you plead guilty to your charges or if you get convicted after a trial. If you’ve been accused of committing a property crime, it’s likely the prosecutor has already tried to convince you to plead guilty, and has possibly guaranteed you a lenient sentence in exchange. Do not accept this offer until you’ve consulted with a Flint criminal defense lawyer. It is likely the prosecutor is able to offer you a more advantageous plea deal. Better yet, it’s possible that your lawyer can defeat your criminal charges at either the trial or pretrial stages, in which case you won’t receive any penalties at all.
Types of Property Crimes
At Davis Law Group, we have a proven track record of providing aggressive and effective defenses to the following categories of Michigan property crimes charges:
- Arson – There are several criminal statutes that apply to the crime of arson, which means illegally destroying property with fire or explosives. Depending on the type of building destroyed, and whether it was occupied or not, you may face a wide range of prison sentences and fines. Except for when the fire harms or puts people at risk of injury, the destroyed property must belong to someone else for you to get charged with arson. However, if you destroy your own property, and there is evidence you did so to collect insurance money, you can get charged with a felony.
- Vandalism – Depending on the amount of damage or the value of the destroyed property, willful and malicious destruction of property may be either a misdemeanor or a felony, which involves harsher penalties and collateral consequences. You might face malicious destruction for anything from breaking windows to painting a graffiti piece somewhere within Genesee County.
- Home Invasion – Breaking into a home without the owner’s permission is a serious offense. The penalties are even more severe if there is evidence that you used force to gain entry into the home, or if you entered the home with the intent of committing a crime. Regardless of the degree of home invasion with which you’ve been charged, the offense is always a felony – the most serious category of crime.
Penalties for Property Crimes
A conviction for any of the crimes mentioned above will result in fines and possible incarceration. In addition to these criminal penalties, you may also face any of the following collateral consequences:
- The cost of litigating your case
- An order to pay back the victims
- Community service as a condition of probation
- A permanent criminal record that can keep you from getting a good job or getting accepted to college
- Ineligibility for most professional licenses
- For a felony conviction, restricted rights to vote or to bear arms
- For immigrants, possible deportation
For these reasons, you should think twice before pleading guilty to your charges. The consequences of your property crimes conviction will extend far beyond fines and jail time.
How Can a Flint Property Crimes Lawyer Defend My Case?
Attorney Maurice Davis used to be a prosecutor, which means that he knows how the authorities will build the case against you. This gives Davis Law Group an upper hand in challenging the state’s arguments in your case. After thoroughly reviewing the evidence of the case and hearing your side of the story, attorney Davis will work tirelessly to discredit the prosecution’s evidence and to dismantle their arguments. If we can show that there is a reasonable doubt as to whether you are guilty, the law requires that you be acquitted of the crime.
In some cases, it may be possible to win your case even before it goes to trial. If the prosecutor attempts to use evidence that was improperly obtained – through an illegal arrest or interrogation, for example – that evidence can be removed from the case. If the remaining evidence does not show that it is reasonably likely that you are the offender, the state may not put you on trial. Instead, the case will be dismissed and you can walk free.
When a victory at trial or during the pretrial stages is not likely, it may be in your best interest to avoid the expense of litigation and to accept a plea agreement. Your Flint property crimes lawyer can negotiate the best possible deal for you available under the circumstances of your case. You may obtain a more lenient sentence or a conviction for a misdemeanor instead of a felony, which significantly reduces the burden of your criminal conviction.