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Fort Collins Attorney Defending Property Crimes

Property crimes may include vandalism, burglary, theft, robbery or more. If you're facing charges for any of these offenses, seek the counsel of an experienced Fort Collins property crimes lawyer at Rachel A. Michael. Our lead attorney has experience as both a defense attorney and a prosecutor, and we know the approach district attorneys often take to these types of cases. More importantly, we focus on the facts and use every mechanism at our disposal to argue your case and seek a positive outcome for you.

Different Types of Property Crimes

A property crime is any intentional crime that leads to the theft or destruction of another person's property without that person's consent. In 2014, more than 135,000 property crimes took place in the state of Colorado alone.

The term "property crime" may encompass many different offenses, including the following:

  • Theft. Theft occurs when one person purposefully deprives another person of their property. This is a fairly broad category that includes crimes such as robbery and larceny.
  • Burglary. Burglary is the unlawful entry into another person's home or other closed structure. The entry usually occurs with the use of force or coercion and with the intent of committing a crime inside.
  • Robbery. Robbery occurs when force, or the threat of force, is used to take money or property from another person.
  • Home invasion. Similar to burglary, home invasion is the unlawful entry of an occupied home. The crime is a home invasion (rather than a burglary) if the defendant is armed and another person is lawfully present in the home.

Trespassing and Vandalism Laws in Colorado

Trespassing is entering another person's property without permission or without lawful authority. To be considered trespassing, it must be proven that some amount of damage was done, no matter how minor - any interference with the owner's use of the property is usually considered sufficient demonstration of damage. Typically, the legal penalty for trespassing includes requiring the defendant to pay damages and issuing an injunction that prohibits the defendant from trespassing again.

Vandalism is the willful damage or defacing of private or public property. Examples include graffiti, breaking windows, cutting trees without permission, tire slashing and ransacking a property. This crime is usually punished based on the amount of damage done, although the presence of prior vandalism convictions may lead to harsher penalties. Criminal charges can range from a Class 2 misdemeanor to a Class 1 felony, depending on the circumstances. Speak with an attorney to learn more.

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