TORONTO VANDALISM LAWYER
Presently, the offence of mischief is governed by s. 430 of the Criminal Code and differs substantially from the previous offence as it was described in the former s. 387. 387(1) defined mischief in relation to property and prohibited mischief to public and private property. When charged under s. 387(3), it was essential to identify and prove the property as public property. Now, the distinction between public and private property no longer exists.
The Criminal Law Group frequently deals with allegations of mischief in the context of youth crimes. The severity of a mischief charge depends on the nature of the offence and the context in which it occurred. We have persuasively resolved a number of mischief allegations, often well in advance of trial and without a criminal record.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Mischief?
We frequently handle allegations of mischief in the context of vandalism. The amended section 430(1) of the Criminal Code provides every one commits mischief who wilfully: (a) destroys or damages property; (b) renders property dangerous, useless, inoperative or ineffective; (c) obstructs, interrupts or interferes with the lawful use, enjoyment or operation of property; or (d) obstructs, interrupts or interferes with any person in the lawful use, enjoyment or operation of property.
Is the Value of the Damage Relevant?
Depending on the value of the damage, a punishment of up to ten years in custody may be pursued. The more damage caused by the mischievous act, the greater likelihood it will be persecuted more aggressively.
TORONTO HATE CRIME LAWYER
Are all Instances of Mischief Prosecuted the Same?
Prosecuting mischief depends on the level of damage and where it occurred. Damage to religious and cultural property are prosecuted more aggressively. The Criminal Code provides every one who commits mischief in relation to property that is a building, structure or part thereof that is primarily used for religious worship, including a church, mosque, synagogue or temple, or an object associated with religious worship located in or on the grounds of such a building or structure, or a cemetery, if the commission of the mischief is motivated by bias, prejudice or hate based on religion, race, colour or national or ethnic origin can be guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment up to ten years.
What about Damage to a Cemetery?
Damage to cemeteries are specifically dealt with in the Criminal Code. Section 182 of the Criminal Code has been applied to the interference with monuments marking the burial of human remains, such as gravestones. The section provides every one who neglects, without lawful excuse, to perform any duty that is imposed on him by law or that he undertakes with reference to the burial of a dead human body or human remains, or improperly or indecently interferes with or offers any indignity to a dead human body or human remains, whether buried or not, is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment up to five years.
We handle a range of mischief and hate crime allegations, specifically in the context of young offenders.