Ravenna Property Crimes Lawyer

Property crimes in Portage County, Ohio, involve the theft, destruction, or damage of another person’s property.

Examples of property crimes include burglary, arson, vandalism, and criminal mischief. The penalties for these crimes can be very severe but vary based on the circumstances. If you or a loved one are charged, a property crime lawyer can evaluate your case and explain how they can help.

Regardless of the exact property crime, these are serious matters and should be handled by an experienced Ravenna defense attorney. At Erb Legal, we have an extensive and successful track record of handling criminal charges involving another’s property across Northeast Ohio. We can use various legal strategies in your defense. We negotiate with the prosecution, challenge evidence, and pursue positive results. We have helped our clients get reduced charges, probation, dismissals, and prove their innocence in court. With our guidance, you can protect yourself from the harm of a property crime conviction.

Contact Erb Legal to set up a consultation.


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Portage County Property Crimes

Crimes related to another’s property cover various offenses and are much more common than most people realize. The severity of a property crime and the penalties attached will depend on the details and value of the property. The defense lawyers at Erb Legal can assist you with all manner and levels of Portage County property crime charges.  

  • Theft (ORC 2913.02): perhaps the most common property offense, theft refers to intentionally taking property from another with the intent to deprive the owner of it. The severity of charges depends on the value stolen and the accused’s prior record.
  • Robbery (ORC 2911.02): Occurs when someone uses force or threats to take property from another person. This is considered a more severe offense than theft and is usually charged as a felony.
  • Burglary (ORC 2911.12): This offense describes when someone enters a building or structure without permission with the intent to commit a crime inside. This can include breaking and entering or using deception to gain access.
  • Arson (ORC 2909.03): Arson is when someone sets fire to property with the intent to cause harm or destruction. This can be burning down a building or setting fire to a vehicle.
  • Criminal Damaging or Endangering (ORC 2909.06): This offense describes someone who intentionally damages, destroys, or puts someone in danger by damaging property. Examples could be damaging someone’s property out of anger or revenge.
  • Receiving Stolen Property (ORC 2913.51): When someone knowingly buys or accepts stolen property, they can be criminally charged. This can include knowingly purchasing stolen goods or obtaining them as payment for a debt.
  • Criminal Mischief (ORC 2909.07): Occurs when someone intentionally damages or destroys property, but the damage is less severe than in a criminal damaging or endangering offense.
  • Vandalism (ORC 2909.05): This offense refers to knowingly causing physical harm to someone else’s property or recklessly causing physical harm to someone else’s property using fire, explosion, or other dangerous means. This can include graffiti, defacing public property, or damaging someone else’s vehicle. The severity of a vandalism charge depends on the value of what was damaged or destroyed. 

Criminal Trespassing

Under ORC 2911.21, criminal trespassing in Ohio occurs when someone enters or remains on someone else’s property without permission or after being told to leave. This can include entering a fenced-off construction site or ignoring a “no trespassing” sign.

Criminal trespassing can be a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances. The offense is typically a fourth-degree misdemeanor if the property is a habitation, such as a house or an apartment.

The offense can be elevated to a felony if the trespasser has a deadly weapon or physically harms someone.

Property Crimes Can Be Felonies

A lot depends on the property value taken or damaged in property crime cases. While typically classified as misdemeanors, property offenses can become felonies in Portage County, Ohio. A property crime becomes a felony when certain aggravating factors are present, or the property loss exceeds a specific dollar amount.

Ohio Felony Property Crimes

  • Criminal mischief can be charged as a fifth-degree felony if the value of the property damage exceeds $1,000.
  • When vandalism damage exceeds $7,500, the offense can be a fifth-degree felony. Suppose the vandalism is committed on a place of worship, a community center, or another designated space. It can be charged as a fourth-degree felony regardless of the damage involved.
  • Arson is always a felony offense in Ohio. The severity of the crime depends on the degree of the arson and the circumstances surrounding the offense. For example, if the building’s occupied at the time of the arson or if the arson hurts someone, the crime can be charged as a first-degree felony.

Remember that Portage County prosecutors have some discretion in how property offenses are pursued and are not strictly governed by the value involved. Other factors can affect your charges, such as the severity of the crime or a prior criminal record.

Penalties for Portage County Property Crimes

Under Ohio law, the sentencing guidelines for property crimes in Portage County, Ohio, are as follows:

  • First-degree misdemeanors: 180 days in jail and fines as high as $1,000
  • Fifth-degree felonies: Up to One year in prison and fines as high as $2,500
  • Fourth degrees felonies: Up to 18 months in prison and fines as high as $5,000
  • Third-degree felonies: Up to five years in prison and fines as high as $10,000
  • Second-degree felonies: Up to eight years in prison and fines as high as $15,000
  • First-degree felonies: Up to 10 years in prison and fines as high as $20,000

The penalties attached to a property crime conviction in Portage County, Ohio, can have lasting effects. Anyone arrested for burglary in Ravenna, receiving stolen property in Kent, or vandalism in Aurora should seek the help of an experienced defense attorney’s help to ensure the best possible outcome.

Juvenile Property Crime Penalties

Juvenile offenders commit many Ohio property crimes, and that process is very different than it is for adults. The case is typically heard in juvenile court when a juvenile is accused of a property crime, like vandalism, trespassing, or criminal mischief. The goal of the juvenile justice system is to rehabilitate the child and prevent future offenses rather than solely punishing them.

If a juvenile is found to have committed a property crime offense in Portage County, they may be subject to several consequences. Depending on the severity, the juvenile may be ordered to pay restitution, participate in counseling or treatment programs, or complete community service.

In some cases, the juvenile may be placed on probation, including conditions such as a curfew, regular check-ins with a probation officer, or drug testing. The juvenile may be placed in a detention facility in more serious cases. The focus is on providing the juvenile with the support and guidance needed to turn their life around and avoid future criminal behavior.

Collateral Damage of a Property Crime Conviction

Aside from possible jail time, fines, financial restitution, and probation, a property crimes conviction will likely be attached to your record for a long time – possibly life if you’re not eligible for expungement.

The collateral consequences of being convicted of a property crime include:

  • Diminished educational opportunities
  • Limited employment opportunities
  • Loss of professional licenses
  • Ineligibility for certain government benefits
  • Ineligibility for certain housing
  • Loss of certain civil rights/inability to possess a firearm
  • Reduced custody or visitation rights for children
  • Social stigma and discrimination

Defending Against Ravenna Property Crimes

Being arrested and charged with a property crime in Portage County, Ohio, is scary. You may feel embarrassed and likely worried about what comes next. And while a lot depends on the property’s value, what you intended also matters, and various defense options may be available. Here are some of the most common defense strategies for Ohio property offenses:

  • Lack of Intent: Many property crimes require the prosecution to prove that you had a specific intent to commit the crime. For example, in a burglary case, the prosecution must prove that the defendant intended to commit a crime inside the property. If the defense can show that you lacked this intent, they may be able to avoid conviction.
  • Mistaken Identity: You may have been falsely accused of a property crime due to mistaken identity in some cases. This defense may argue that the defendant did not commit the crime and may present evidence such as eyewitness testimony or surveillance footage to support their claim.
  • Duress or Necessity: In certain situations, you may have been compelled to commit a property crime due to duress or necessity. For example, if someone was threatened with violence if they didn’t commit a burglary, they may be able to argue that they only committed the crime under duress.
  • Illegal Search & Seizure: If evidence was obtained through an unlawful search or seizure, it might be possible to suppress it. This could weaken the prosecution’s case or even result in the charges being dropped altogether.
  • Plea Agreement: In some cases, the best option for someone charged with a property crime may be to negotiate a plea with the prosecution. This could involve agreeing to plead guilty to a lesser property offense in exchange for a reduced sentence or other benefits.

These are just a few possible defenses to property crime charges, but they all require a skilled defense lawyer to present them successfully. To effectively defend yourself against such a charge, you need a lawyer to investigate the facts and argue on your behalf. Your lawyer can also help you determine the consequences of a guilty plea and advise you on the best course of action.

Ravenna Property Crimes: FAQs

To help you better understand your charges, the penalties, and what to expect if you’re arrested, we have answered some of the frequently asked questions about facing property crimes in Portage County, Ohio. If you have additional questions, contact our Ravenna defense lawyers.

What’s Considered an Ohio Property Crime?

In Ohio, property crimes refer to criminal offenses that involve the theft, destruction, or damage of another person’s property. Common examples of Ohio property crimes include theft, burglary, arson, vandalism, and criminal mischief.

What’s the Difference Between Theft and Robbery in Ohio?

Theft is taking someone else’s property without their permission, while robbery is taking someone else’s property by force or threat of force. The penalties for robbery are generally more severe than those for theft.

What’s the Difference Between Burglary & Robbery in Ohio?

Burglary is the act of unlawfully entering a building or structure intending to commit a crime, while robbery is taking someone else’s property by force or threat of force. The penalties for burglary and robbery vary depending on the severity of the offense.

Can The Victim of a Property Crime Sue the Offender?

Yes, a victim of a property crime can sue the perpetrator in Ohio for damages, such as the cost of repairing or replacing stolen or damaged property. This would be in addition to any criminal penalties administered if convicted.

Is A Statute of Limitations for Property Crimes in Ohio?

The statute of limitations for property crimes in Ohio varies depending on the offense. For example, the statute of limitations for theft and property damage is two years, while the rule for arson and felonies is usually six years.

Consult A Property Crimes Lawyer

Whether you’ve been accused of criminal trespassing in Aurora, causing criminal damage in Ravenna, burglary in Streetsboro, or any Portage County property offense, it is essential to take it seriously. A conviction is not something you want on your record. With effective legal representation from Erb Legal, you can prepare a compelling defense and work towards a favorable result, such as a dismissal, reduction, or acquittal.