Being arrested and charged with arson is quite serious. Though many states consider it a misdemeanor, in California, it is a felony which carries a punishment of up to 9 years in prison, depending on the circumstances. The length of punishment depends on several factors such as the amount of damage that occurred and any injuries that may have happened due to the fire. If someone was in the building when you set the fire, you are going to be facing even harsher penalties.
Here are some penalties that you may be facing with an arson charge.
If you have a good lawyer, you may be able to get off with probation. While you might have probation, it can last up to five years, depending on your case. If you are lucky enough to get probation, you must follow all the rules. Make sure that you meet up with your probation officer as required and pay your fines. Even one little mistake can land you in jail or prison.
Whether or not you get any other punishments, you will probably have a restitution order. This means that you will have to pay for all the damages that you caused. You will have to pay the property owner so that he or she can rebuild. You may even have to pay the fire department for their efforts to save the property.
Fines are common for arson charges. Depending on the damage, you may owe several thousand dollars, though these fines can go up to several tens of thousands of dollars.
You are also looking at a lengthy jail time. If you are charged with a misdemeanor, you may spend up to a year in jail. If you tried to hurt someone (or even kill them), you might be looking at life in jail.If you or a loved one has been arrested for arson or the related criminal offense of “unlawful burning”, in Temecula, Menifee, Murrieta, Wildomar, Lake Elsinore, Hemet, Perris, Corona, Winchester or any other surrounding Riverside County city, it's important that you obtain the best representation from an experienced criminal defense attorney. Contact our law office immediately to schedule a free and confidential consultation. We represent adults and juveniles/minors in all the Riverside County courts.