Arson is considered a serious offense in the New York Penal Code. The Code delineates five different arson offenses. The New York Penal Code considers arson to be a serious crime. As a result, the New York Penal Code provides for stiff penalties in cases in which a person is found guilty of arson in the third degree.
The penalties for arson, including arson in the third degree, can include extended prison terms. In addition, the arson laws commonly call for a person to face a fine upon conviction and an on order to pay restitution for the losses sustained because of the fire.
Elements of Arson in the Third Degree
The elements of the crime of arson in the third degree are fairly straightforward. First, the fire itself must be intentionally started. Second, the fire must result in damage to property. The property can be a building of some type, a motor vehicle, or a watercraft.
Examples of Arson in the Third Degree
An example of arson in the third degree could involves a business owner who was having financial issues. The business owner elected to set his business on fire in order to collect the insurance money. Even though he solely owned the business himself, he had an unlawful purpose for starting the fire.
Another example of arson in the third degree arises from a situation in which an angry former boyfriend, sets his ex-girlfriend’s car on fire. The act of setting the ex-girlfriend’s car on fire in this manner would constitute arson in the third degree.
Sentence for Arson in the Third Degree
According to the New York Penal Code, arson in the third degree is classified as a class C felony. As a result, a person convicted of arson in the third degree can face the prospect of a maximum prison sentence of 15 years if convicted of this crime. In addition, a person convicted of arson in the third degree is also likely to face a restitution order at the time of sentencing. A person convicted of this crime may also be required to pay a significant penalty as well.
Defenses to Arson in the Third Degree
NYC criminal defense lawyers can aid in mounting a defense to a charge of arson in the third degree. There are in fact a number of different potential defenses to the crime of arson in the third degree.
One defense to arson in the third degree is that the fire was not intentionally set, but rather ignited by accident. In order to be guilty of the crime of arson in the third degree, the fire must have been intentionally set by the alleged perpetrator.
Another defense to the crime of arson in the third degree is that the perpetrator of the fire started the fire itself for a lawful purpose. If the person who started the fire is not the only owner, all of the owners of the property would need to agree to starting of the fire.
A New York criminal defense attorney will schedule an initial consultation with a person being investigated for, or who has been charged with, arson in the third degree. A criminal defense lawyer will provide an overall evaluation of a arson in the third degree case. In addition, legal counsel will provide answers to any questions facing arson in the third degree charges might have regarding is or her case or the associated law. As a matter of general practice in New York, an attorney does not charge a legal fee for a consultation in a arson in the third degree case.