Halloween Pranks Lead to Trouble for Your College Student
Halloween is a time for fun, candy and costumes, but it is also a time for tricks and pranks. All over the state, young adults will try to pull off jokes that will both scare and amuse their unsuspecting victims. Unfortunately, amongst all of the fun, these endeavors can go wrong, causing serious injury or property damage. When these incidents occur, young college students can face extensive punishments that could potentially derail their entire futures. Don’t let one instance of poor judgment ruin your student’s chances for a successful life.
Eggs and Toilet Paper
Egging is a common Halloween prank that involves throwing raw eggs at people, houses and cars. While young people may see it as a harmless trick, the reality is that significant damage and injury can result from this activity. On houses, the eggs can cause permanent damage to the paint and they are especially difficult to remove when dried. When thrown, they become mini projectiles, leading to broken windows and dents in the bodies of car. When people are the target, bruising may occur at the site of impact, along with possibly serious injuries to the eye.
Toilet papering is another trick commonly carried out on Halloween. This is a prank where individuals cover someone’s property in toilet paper. Its a silly thing to do and it rarely elicits more than a laugh, but this “harmless” prank can rise to the level of criminal penalties.
In Florida, egg throwing and toilet papering may fall under a crime called criminal mischief. Its is defined as willfully and maliciously causing damage to someone’s property. Criminal mischief charges are classified as follows:
- Damage less than $200 is a 2nd degree misdemeanor
- Damage between $200 and $1000 is a 1st degree misdemeanor
- Damage of an amount greater than $1000 is a 3rd degree felony
- The 3rd degree felony charge can result in a 5 year imprisonment along with fines
Young adults, who are too old to go trick-or-treating themselves, sometimes find an entirely inappropriate and dangerous way to benefit from the flow of candy. Halloween bag snatching occurs when an individual suddenly jumps out of nowhere and unexpectedly grabs a child’s candy bag from them. While the alleged perpetrators may see it as a trick, law enforcement officers see it as a serious crime.
Bag snatching may be classified as larceny under Florida law. Petty larceny involves taking possession of another person’s property that is valued at less than $300. The first offense carries a possible punishment of up to 5 years incarceration and a $5000 fine. Each subsequent offense can result in a stricter punishments.
While all of these pranks may start out with harmless intentions, they can quickly turn into legal battles. But with the assistance of an experienced attorney, you can put forth a successful defense and protect your college student’s future.
If your college student is facing criminal charges, Attorneys Mycki Ratzan and Jude Faccidomo can provide him or her with an aggressive and comprehensive defense. Contact Ratzan & Faccidomo, LLC in Miami today at (305) 330-3905 for a confidential and free consultation.