Arson isn’t a very common crime, but when it does happen it is taken very seriously. According to the El Paso Times and Fire Rescue 1 a recent fire brings the number of burned homes to 5 for this month in one local region.
The most recent of these occurred last week and destroyed three homes that were under construction. The fire, which seems to have originated in one home on Hidden Grove, did over $600,000 in damage. In all, 14 fire trucks responded to the scene. Three homes were destroyed and an additional three were damaged.
According to the news reports, witness reported seeing a white car with tinted windows leaving the scene before the fires were noticed. At this time, investigators are seeking the driver of this vehicle for additional information.
Arsons are often started as a means to collect insurance money. Perhaps the home owner is drowning in debt and doesn’t see a way out. Other times, arson is committed as a crime of rage or revenge. Still other times, it seems arson is the symptom of a disturbed mind and really has no logical explanation.
Regardless of why the arson is committed, it is a serious offense. Depending on the reasons behind it, being charged with arson typically means a Class 2 felony charge. This type of charge carries a potential 20 years in prison and fines.
A far more common property offense, criminal mischief, is charged depending on the value of the damage done. Criminal mischief involves damaging or destroying the property of another and can be as minor as a Class C misdemeanor or as serious as a 1st degree felony.
When you are facing criminal charges involving the property of another person, you should discuss your concerns with a defense attorney. Contact me today to talk about the charges against you and get some help in deciding what to do next.