No matter you are a victim of arson criminal activity or have been charged with unfair arson laws in Prince William County, it is wise to have some legal knowledge of the Prince William Virginia Arson Laws.
Definition of Arson
According to the Prince William Virginia Arson Laws, arson is an intentional activity that involves the bombing or burning of a property, dwelling or physical structure.
Punishment of Arson
Prince William Virginia Arson Laws, section 18.2- 77 mentions that the person charged with arson is categorized as a felony of Class 2, 3 or 4. The court holds the right to decide the felony class based on the severity and intensity of the burning.
As the Prince William Virginia Arson Laws prohibit the malicious destruction or burning by using an explosive device or fire to dwell a building and violation of this law result in 5 years to life prison. Prince William Virginia Arson Laws can also impose a fine of $100,000. However, arson charges of the higher felony classes have the punishment of maximum 20 years of imprisonment.
Procedure of Arson Charges
As an arson charge is a felony, therefore there is a greater burden on Prince William Virginia Arson Laws court to prove the Virginia arson charge. The foremost cause of arson is perceived to be an accident and the criminal act is charged to a person considering the following factors;
- Incendiary Act: It is the responsibility of the Commonwealth to prove the incendiary acts and the origin point of the fire. This is to ensure that the incendiary is not an accident but a criminal act with ill intention.
- Accused Person: The General District Court has to confirm that the accused person who has been charged with arson is the actual person who initiated the fire. The presence of threats, incriminating statements or fire accelerants can be used to prove the charges against the accused person.
- Criminal Intention: The state of mind under which the offender has done the criminal act is also considered by the court, which is termed as “malice”. If the offender clearly realizes that ding an incendiary act will result in the dwelling of the house or burning, he will be convicted as an intentional act under this statue.
- Dwelling Place: Arson charges are regardless of the accused burned or damaged the place. The dwelling place is always perceived as a residential area regardless the area is temporarily vacant. However, the burning of a permanent vacant building will not be termed as a dwelling
Defence against the Arson Charges
To defend the arson charges, it is important to consult an experienced arson attorney who can guide and assist you in the legal aspects and considerations of the Prince William Virginia Arson Laws. The first step after hiring an attorney is to gather the essential proofs, evidence, and witnesses that can confirm you as the person who was not involved in the criminal act of arson in the Virginia court. Besides this, your attorney can also defend you in front of the person who belongs the dwelling place in order to make out of court settlements and successful negotiation to take the case back from the court. This way you can make a stronger defence in the light of Prince William Virginia Arson Laws.