Is this an arson? Our county has a burn ban (probably like everybody). A local resident decided to burn his trash. Of course a 30 mile an hour wind came and as a result over 1000 acres of rural property was damaged. No houses or buildings were destroyed but some have significant exterior damage.
This idiot deserves some offense but is it an arson?
How do you show an intent to destroy or damage? You might want to look at reckless damage(28.04). I know it is only a class C but criminal mischief doesn't seem to be an option either. Seems more like stupidity than a crime. Presumably, you have a local ordinance violation and the property owner would have a cause of action for damages. Good luck.
I live in the country, running livestock and growing hay, so am in fear of such a thing happening to our property too. We already had one wild fire (discarded cigarette?) within 1000 feet of our property line. I feel the pain of the landowner. If anyone else can offer something tougher, please share.
Violation of the burn ban is only a Class C misdemeanor. What about a joint civil suit by the affected landowners alleging negligence?
There used to be no such crime as "reckless" arson. The legislature recently amended PC 28.02 to criminalize reckless fires started by meth cookers, et al., but I don't think that will apply to your facts, so you're probably out of luck for anything more than a Class C.
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