Arson is defined as the willful and malicious charring or burning of a structure or property. Arson laws also include certain vehicles, such as motor homes and boats. The criminal act typically involves intent to burn down property or structure, do property damage, or be reckless. Washington State has its own arson requirements to determine when a defendant is guilty of arson in the first degree.
Arson in the first degree is maliciously and knowingly causing an explosion or fire which creates a dangerous situation for other people, as well as damaging property.
In Washington State, a building is defined as two or more units either occupied or separately locked and secured.
Yes. Damage in an arson charge generally means:
An arson charge only results when a person causes some type of damage to the structure or property. If there’s no damage, then the defendant cannot be charged with arson.
No. Arson in the first degree charge requires intent to commit the crime. Recklessness is different from intent, because it means the person was careless or didn’t value the safety of human life or property.
A person who recklessly causes fire damage to a property or structure can be charged with a separate type of arson charge, known as reckless burning in the first or second degree.
Yes. Arson is considered a class A felony and is punishable by life in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.
Yes. Contact a criminal lawyer to understand how to resolve this charge.
Last Modified: 08-03-2016 02:53 PM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
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