Criminal Mischief in the 4th degree in New York Penal Law, s. 145.00


We defend college students in and around Ithaca, NY on a frequent basis.  It is common in our American culture for college students to drink and decide to break things that do not belong to them.  In New York, that constitutes a Class A misdemeanor which could result in some harsh penalties. 

Under our law, a person is guilty of Criminal Mischief in the Fourth Degree when, having no right to do so nor any reasonable ground to believe that he or she has such right, that person intentionally damages property of another person. 


  1. Up to 1 year in jail
  2. Up to 3 years Probation (closely monitored community supervision)
  3. $0-$1000 fine
  4. Court surcharges 
  5. A permanent criminal conviction (DNA sample required. DNA fee)

 When defending these charges, there is often a question as to proving the identity of the person accused with damaging property.  With any criminal charge, we analyze the facts and circumstances surrounding the allegation.  The prosecutor has the burden to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a specific person did a specific crime.  In property damage cases, there is also the complicating factor of figuring out RESTITUTION (i.e. how much the victim is owed to replace or repair the damaged property).  

These kinds of cases can take longer than usual because the District Attorney's Office often requests that the Probation Department perform a "Pre-Sentence Investigation" to determine the amount of restitution in the case.  This adds 4-8 weeks to a case that would otherwise be over in a relatively short time.  

With any criminal allegation, this case must be defended by a skilled local criminal defense attorney who understands the local prosecutors and judges in order to lessen the potential punishment for the accused. 

If you are charged with Criminal Mischief or other property crimes, call us: 607-229-5184

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