In the Pittsburgh area, an individual may be charged with agricultural vandalism if he or she intentionally or recklessly defaces, marks or otherwise damages real or tangible personal property used for agriculture or farming. For example, if somebody carelessly drives their pickup over a farmer’s field of oats, destroying the plants, and then crashes into a tractor and damages it, they can be guilty of agricultural vandalism.
If you have been charged with agricultural vandalism or you are being investigated for it, we suggest that you speak with an experienced Pittsburgh agricultural vandalism lawyer who can review the details of your situation and walk you through the next steps. Call Worgul, Sarna & Ness, Criminal Defense Attorneys for a free, confidential legal case evaluation at (412) 281-2146.
What is Agricultural Vandalism?
In Pennsylvania, agricultural activity and farming are protected by agricultural vandalism law. This includes public and private research activity, records, and data and data-gathering equipment related to agricultural products, as well as agricultural crops, livestock or livestock products, poultry or poultry products, trees and timber products, milk, eggs or dairy products, or fruits or other horticultural products.
If you are convicted of agricultural vandalism and intentionally causing a loss valued in excess of $5,000, this is a felony of the third degree. A loss valued at greater than $1,000 but less than $5,000 is considered a misdemeanor of the first degree. Intentionally or recklessly causing a loss greater than $500 but less than $1,000 is a misdemeanor of the second degree.
Other agricultural losses less than $500, whether intentional or reckless, is usually charged as a misdemeanor of the third degree.
Your Criminal Record – A Pittsburgh Agricultural Vandalism Lawyer May Help
A single mistake, like a one-time instance of agricultural vandalism, can lead to a permanent criminal record and all of the consequences that entails. Having an agricultural vandalism conviction on your record can make it difficult or impossible to maintain a job, apartment or home, custody of any children, and much more. A property crime lawyer can help defend your case.