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Elmer Brightens Understanding of The Crime of Arson

Posted by Elmer H.. Young | Jun 07, 2019 | 0 Comments

              "Playing with matches can get you burned." We have all heard this since we were children. it was good advice. There must be something in our genetic makeup that both draws us toward and turns us away from the flames and heat of this primeval element. Attitudes about arsonist are particularly "hot." Perhaps that is because fire cannot always be contained. If it spreads unintended consequences can burn whole cities and kill or maim everything in it's path. So it follows that very severe punishments are handed out for such crimes. Intentional ignition of something very small and insignificant can result in murderous consequences.

             First Degree Arson: Georgia Code Title 16, Section 16-7-60 (a) A person commits the offense of arson in the first degree when, by means of fire or explosive, he or she knowingly damages or knowingly causes, aids, abets, advises, encourages, hires, counsels, or procures another to damage:

                (1) Any dwelling house of another without his or her consent or in                   which another has a security interest, including but not limited to                   a mortgage, a lien, or a conveyance to secure debt, without the                     consent of both, whether it is occupied, unoccupied, or vacant;

                (2) Any building, vehicle, railroad car, watercraft, or other                               structure of another without his or her consent or in which                             another has a security interest, including but not limited to a                           mortgage, a lien, or a conveyance to secure debt, without the                       consent of both, if such structure is designed for use as a                             dwelling, whether it is occupied, unoccupied, or vacant;

               (3) Any dwelling house, building, vehicle, railroad car, watercraft,                    aircraft, or other structure whether it is occupied, unoccupied, or                    vacant and when such is insured against loss or damage by fire                    or explosive and such loss or damage is accomplished without                      the consent of both the insurer and the insured;

                (4) Any dwelling house, building, vehicle, railroad car, watercraft,                   aircraft, or other structure whether it is occupied, unoccupied, or                   vacant with the intent to defeat, prejudice, or defraud the rights                     of a spouse or co-owner; or

               (5) Any building, vehicle, railroad car, watercraft, aircraft, or other                  structure under such circumstances that it is reasonably                                foreseeable that human life might be endangered.

               (b) A person also commits the offense of arson in the first degree                 when, in the commission of a felony, by means of fire or                                 explosive, he or she knowingly damages or knowingly causes,                     aids, abets, advises, encourages, hires, counsels, or procures                       another to damage anything included or described in subsection                  (a) of this Code section.

              (c) A person convicted of the offense of arson in the first degree shall be punished by a fine of not more than $50,000.00 or by imprisonment for not less than one nor more than 20 years, or both.

             Second Degree: Georgia Code Title 16, Section 16-7-61 (a) A person commits the offense of arson in the second degree as to any building, vehicle, railroad car, watercraft, aircraft, or other structure not included or described in Code Section 16-7-60 when, by means of fire or explosive, he or she knowingly damages or knowingly causes, aids, abets, advises, encourages, hires, counsels, or procures another to damage any building, vehicle, railroad car, watercraft, aircraft, or other structure of another without his or her consent or in which another has a security interest, including but not limited to a mortgage, a lien, or a conveyance to secure debt, without the consent of both.

           (b) A person also commits the offense of arson in the second degree as to any building, vehicle, railroad car, watercraft, aircraft, or other structure not included or described in Code Section 16-7-60 when, in the commission of a felony, by means of fire or explosive, he or she knowingly damages or knowingly causes, aids, abets, advises, encourages, hires, counsels, or procures another to damage any building, vehicle, railroad car, watercraft, aircraft, or other structure of another without his or her consent or in which another has a security interest, including but not limited to a mortgage, a lien, or a conveyance to secure debt, without the consent of both.

            (c) A person convicted of the offense of arson in the second degree shall be punished by a fine of not more than $25,000.00 or by imprisonment for not less than one nor more than ten years, or both.

            Third Degree: Georgia Code Title 16, Section 16-7-62 (a) A person commits the offense of arson in the third degree when, by means of fire or explosive, he or she knowingly damages or knowingly causes, aids, abets, advises, encourages, hires, counsels, or procures another to damage:

            (1) Any personal property of another without his or her consent or in which another has a security interest, including but not limited to a lien, without the consent of both and the value of the property is $25.00 or more;

           (2) Any personal property when such is insured against loss or damage by fire or explosive and the loss or damage is accomplished without the consent of both the insurer and insured and the value of the property is $25.00 or more; or

           (3) Any personal property with the intent to defeat, prejudice, or defraud the rights of a spouse or co-owner and the value of the property is $25.00 or more.

           (b) A person also commits the offense of arson in the third degree when, in the commission of a felony, by means of fire or explosive, he or she knowingly damages or knowingly causes, aids, abets, advises, encourages, hires, counsels, or procures another to damage anything included or described in subsection (a) of this Code section.

           (c) A person convicted of the offense of arson in the third degree shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $10,000.00 or by imprisonment for not less than one nor more than five years, or both.

About the Author

Elmer H.. Young

Elmer H. Young has been practicing for more than 45 years and employs his advanced level forensic training in high-level sex crimes and capital felony cases.

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Honors & Recognition

Mr. Young's success in obtaining non-DUI dispositions in his DUI/DWI cases has earned him the respect of his peers and clients alike. He has earned a LegalMatch Five-Star rating and a coveted 10 Avvo Rating. His high ratings reflect his ability to help his clients.

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