The second precinct, at Yonkers Raceway and across from the Empire City Casino has seen several acts of vandalism over the past several years. The targets of these unknown vandals? Officers’ private vehicles. And although the officers aren’t happy about the situation, they have yet to catch those responsible.The parking lot where officers leave their private vehicles while at work is reportedly unfenced and dark. There is a lack of lighting and no video cameras. According to The City Room of the New York Times, the lot is used as a shortcut by many pedestrians.
Tires have been slashed, doors scratched, and windows broken over the past few years. The really bothersome part about the whole situation, it seems, is the fact that it’s all happening right under the police’s nose.
Most of these cases of vandalism would likely be categorized as Criminal Mischief in the 4th degree simply because they seem to be intentional acts with damages less than $250 in value. A charge like this is a Class A misdemeanor under New York statutes.
If, however, the vandals broke out a windshield or slashed all four tires on a vehicle, increasing the damage to a value greater than $250, they could face felony charges if ever caught. Criminal mischief in the third degree is a Class E non-violent felony.
Luckily, for the cops at the second precinct, a $5,000 grant from the state will be paying for new lights and a surveillance camera. State Senator Jeffrey D. Klein is quoted as saying “We have to make sure Yonkers’ finest has the best technology.”
Criminal mischief is the most common property offense. It covers many situations where the property of another is damaged, whether intentionally or otherwise. Penalties for this offense range from fines and probation to several years in prison depending on the specifics.
If you are charged with damaging someone’s property, you need an attorney on your side to help you through the process. Contact me today to talk about your case and I can give you some useful legal advice.