Illinois Criminal Defense Blog

Monday, May 1, 2017

Property Crimes in Chicago: What You Need to Know

Destroying or vandalizing someone’s property is a crime—and it’s one that can land you in serious hot water with the Chicago court system. If you’ve been accused of a property crime in Chicago or the suburbs, it’s a good idea to talk to a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.

What Happens if You Destroy or Vandalize Someone’s Property?

Property crimes, which include destruction of property, vandalizing, and defacing, as well as a handful of other crimes, are serious offenses under Illinois law.

If you’re caught, you could be facing a misdemeanor or a felony—and that mostly depends on the cost of the damage you caused.

Misdemeanor Property Crimes

If you damage or destroy property when the damage is under $300, you’re looking at a misdemeanor. You could spend up to a year in jail and pay fines of up to $2,500.

Felony Property Crimes

If the damage to the property is more than $300 but less than $10,000, or if the damage is committed against a school, a place of worship, or farm equipment and totals less than $300, it’s a Class 4 felony. A conviction carries a penalty of up to 3 years in prison (not the county jail) and fines of up to $25,000.

Property damage valued at more than $10,000 but less than $100,000 is a Class 3 felony. That’s also true if it’s committed against a school, place of worship, or farm equipment that’s valued between $300 and $10,000. You could spend up to 5 years in prison and pay a fine of up to $25,000.

When the property damage is valued at more than $100,000 or it’s a school, place of worship, or farm equipment that’s valued between $10,000 and $100,000, the crime becomes a Class 3 felony. That carries a prison sentence of 3 to 7 years and fines of up to $25,000.

If the damage is valued at more than $100,000 and it’s committed against a school, a place of worship,  or farm equipment, you’re looking at a Class 1 felony. A Class 1 felony carries a 4- to 15-year prison sentence and fines of up to $25,000.

Do You Need to Talk to a Lawyer About Destruction of Property in Chicago or the Suburbs?

If you need to talk to a Chicago criminal defense attorney about property crimes that you’re accused of committing in Chicago, Skokie, or Rolling Meadows, call us immediately at 847-920-4570 for a free case review. We may be able to help you.


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