Staten Island Arson Lawyer

Staten Island Arson Lawyer

Staten Island Arson Attorney

There are 5 degrees of arson in New York, including misdemeanors and felonies. Prosecutors in arson cases aggressively pursue a conviction. If you are charged with arson and convicted, you could receive 1 year to 25 years of incarceration, as well as fines and a criminal record. In addition to criminal penalties, this can impact much of your life in the future, including your ability to get jobs or loans. To receive the most favorable outcome in an arson case, you need an experienced and dedicated attorney to defend you.

Arson Defense Attorney in Staten Island

At The Vitaliano Law Firm, we believe that everyone deserves effective representation. Criminal law and defense in New York can be complex, and it’s essential that you work with attorneys who understand the state and its local laws. Our attorneys have worked in the state and the Staten Island area for years, and we have experience working as the prosecution. This provides us with unique insights into how the prosecution works and how to defend you.

Facing any criminal charges can be terrifying. Penalties may be severe, and your future could be at risk. When you are in criminal court, you are facing state prosecutors. They have immense resources and time to create the case against you. You need to work with an attorney who can work just as diligently to mount an effective defense that negates or limits the charges and penalties you face.

Understanding Arson Charges in Staten Island

Arson is the act of deliberately setting a fire as well as the resulting damage to property. Arson convictions rest on the act being intentional and willful. There are several factors that impact how arson is charged:

  • The intention of the person who caused the fire, specifically whether it was deliberate, reckless, or accidental
  • Whether any people were in the property and therefore in danger
  • Whether any person was injured
  • The method that was used to cause the fire
  • The type of building or property that was harmed

Based on these factors, arson is charged in 5 different degrees.

Arson Penalties

The penalties for degrees of arson charges include:

  • Fifth Degree: This is the least severe arson charge and a Class A misdemeanor. Penalties include up to 1 year in jail, with a potential for probation for 3 years. There may also be required fines and restitution to provide for the victim.
  • Fourth Degree: This is a Class E felony, which may result in 1 to 4 years in prison. There may also be probation for 5 years in addition to fines and restitution.
  • Third Degree: This is a Class C felony. Penalties include 1 to 15 years imprisonment and potential fines and restitution.
  • Second Degree: This is charged as a Class B felony, resulting in 5 to 25 years of imprisonment.
  • First Degree: This is the most serious charge, and it is an A-1 felony. The penalties include a minimum sentence of 15 to 40 years up to a life sentence.

No matter what degree of arson you are facing, a criminal defense attorney is necessary to mitigate your charges by arguing for a lower-degree sentencing. In some cases, an attorney may be able to eliminate the charges against you.

Why Do I Need an Arson Defense Attorney?

Criminal law is not easy to navigate without a skilled and experienced attorney. If your defense is not effective and comprehensive, you may face jail time, imprisonment, fines, and a criminal record that can impact your entire future. An arson defense attorney can review the facts of your case and use their years working with cases like yours to find the most ideal solution. If your rights were violated, or if there is insufficient evidence against you, a defense attorney knows how to leverage that information in your favor.

Defenses for Arson Charges

To convict you of arson, the prosecution must prove that you willfully and intentionally started the fire. This can potentially be difficult, and a skilled attorney can advocate for your rights. The prosecution has the burden of proving that you had the intent to start the fire or that you set one at all. Potential defenses include:

  • You didn’t set the fire. The fire could have started through natural causes.
  • You didn’t intend to start a fire. For most arson charges, proving negligence, recklessness, or that it was an accident can prevent you from being convicted.
  • There is not enough evidence. If there is not enough evidence, an attorney can prevent you from being charged.

Criminal Defense Arson Lawyer FAQs

Q: What Is the Sentence for Arson in New York?

A: The sentence for arson depends on the degree charged. The lowest severity charge is fifth-degree arson, and sentencing is up to a year in jail or 3 years of probation. This charge is a misdemeanor. All arson charges other than fifth-degree arson are felonies. The highest charge, arson in the first degree, carries a sentence between 15 years and life.

Q: What Is the Arson Law in New York?

A: Arson is when someone willfully and deliberately starts a fire or causes an explosion that leads to property damage. This is an illegal act that results in criminal charges. Conviction of arson charges could result in several years of probation, fines and restitution, along with anywhere from 1 year in jail to 15 years to life in prison.

Q: Is Arson a Felony in New York?

A: Whether arson is a felony or a misdemeanor depends on the severity of the charge. Fifth-degree arson is a misdemeanor, while other arson charges are felonies. Determining the degree of arson that the offense is charged depends on several factors, such as if anyone was injured or in danger and whether the person intentionally started the fire.

Q: What Is the Highest Level of Arson?

A: The highest arson charge is arson in the first degree. The factors that turn a lower arson charge into a first-degree charge include:

  • The fire was caused by a propelled incendiary device or an explosive.
  • The fire led to a serious injury.
  • The fire was started with the intention of gaining a financial advantage.
  • There was someone in the property when the fire was started, and the person starting it knew that was likely.

Protecting Your Interests With Effective Defense

It’s essential to protect your future. Contact The Vitaliano Law Firm today to hear how we can help you defend your case.