Long Island Arson Defense Attorney
Arson is setting a fire that reaches a structure and, in turn, burns that structure. Arson law also treats explosions as burnings. The district attorney will try to prove that however slight the burning, the arson is complete, so it doesn’t matter how much burning took place. In some cases, a structure does not have to burn to the ground for it to be considered arson.
This can be a very tricky area of law so it is imperative to have an experienced Long Island arson defense attorney like the Mirsky Law Firm to defend your case. Arson is a crime committed “willfully and maliciously” – all the D.A. needs to prove is that the fire was started intentionally. Even if there was no intent to burn a structure, starting a fire with the purpose of burning a structure can be enough to be sentenced. Arson is a crime against possession, not ownership, so it’s possible for a person to be charged for burning their own house, or committing arson against themselves.
A person helping with the crime is usually charged with pyromania rather than being an accomplice to the crime. Pouring gasoline on the floor of a building or possessing firebombs may also be offenses. Arson that involves damage to federal property, is almost always prosecuted in federal court, which not every attorney can handle. The Long Island arson defense attorneys at the Mirsky Law Firm have successfully defended many clients against arson charges.
Arson Arrest Information
What Does “Arson” Mean in New York?
Any person in New York accused of setting a fire, or starting an explosion, that burns a structure, may be arrested and tried for arson. For the purposes of criminal charges, a vehicle counts as a structure. The charges and penalties vary depending on the circumstances of the case.
A Matter of Degrees
The state of New York characterizes five degrees of arson, with fifth degree being the lowest level of the offense and first degree being the highest. Some arson charges are misdemeanors, and others are felonies.
First degree arson, a class A felony, is the most serious charge a person accused of arson could face – it requires that the suspect have caused serious injury to someone not involved in setting the fire, or that the suspect set the fire with the expectation of financial gain and while a person not involved in setting the fire was present in the structure and while the presence of that person was reasonably foreseeable.
Second degree arson, a class B felony, is the next most serious charge of arson and requires the accused to have intentionally damaged a structure by setting a fire while an uninvolved party was inside the structure and while the presence of the other person was a reasonable possibility.
Third degree arson, a class C felony, only requires that the accused intentionally damaged a structure by starting a fire.
Fourth degree arson, a class E felony, requires an even lower standard of proof. It only requires that the accused recklessly damaged a structure by setting an intentional fire.
Fifth degree arson, a class A misdemeanor, is the least serious charge a person accused of pyromania could face – it requires that the suspect intentionally damaged the property of another, without the property owner’s consent, by intentionally setting a fire or causing an explosion.
Depending on the circumstances of the case, an arson suspect may face up to 25 years in prison if convicted. In addition to jail time, individuals accused of arson face the risk of having to pay serious fines. Your personal life may also be affected after friends and family members find out about a conviction. Some people convicted of arson end up losing the trust and support of friends, family, and the community at large. The specific facts of the case will weigh heavily on the type of punishment handed down, with stiffer punishments reserved for those whose actions result in the death or serious injury of another. To fight for the justice you deserve, hire an experienced attorney who can provide you with the legal services you need to win your life back.
After an Arson Related Arrest
When the police think they have enough evidence to show that a person committed one of the above mentioned degrees of pyromania, they can arrest the person and charge the person with the crime. During the arrest and investigation, suspects are urged not to speak to police, under any circumstances, other than for purposes of identification and to request legal representation.
When a case goes to trial, the prosecution is required to present their case. In order to show that a suspect actually committed a crime, the prosecution must show the presence of certain elements of the offense. If any of the essential elements can’t be proven, the prosecution has no case. However, disproving any of these elements can require skilled legal experience and is not something that should be trusted to a Long Island criminal defense lawyer without legal experience. With up to 25 years in prison on the line, there is simply too much at risk to trust a defense to anything but credentialed and proven legal counsel. To achieve the best possible outcome for your case, contact a Suffolk County criminal defense attorney at Mirsky Law Firm.
Experienced Long Island Arson Defense Attorney
America’s legal system and every legal system within the United States allows individuals accused of crimes to act as their own legal counsel in court. This is a cornerstone of the U.S. legal system and is a right of anyone accused of a crime anywhere in the U.S., but it is an option and a right that most defense attorneys, and even many prosecutors, will advise suspects of crimes against.
Arson is an extremely serious crime that usually doesn’t involve getting off with a warning. There are many different degrees of arson and Mr. Mirsky has defended them all – he can help you if you are facing criminal charges. The penalties can be severe, but only a Long Island arson defense attorney experienced in these types of cases can get you the best possible results.
The team of lawyers at the Mirsky Law Firm have experience defending clients against a variety of criminal law charges, including drug crimes, DUI, sex crimes, larceny, and traffic violations. If you or someone you know is facing criminal arson charges in Long Island, Nassau County, Suffolk County or New York, hiring the right Long Island arson defense attorney FAST is critical. Whether you’re being questioned by the police or are facing criminal indictment, you need Long Island arson defense attorney Mirsky on your side before it’s too late. Don’t hesitate, please call now or complete the form on this site for a free consultation about your rights.