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car keyed by juvenilles:URGENT

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K

katbug4

Guest
Coaches car is keyed by 2 team members and witnessed by another parent. Coach confronts them 1st time both deny. 2nd confrontation one admits, one still denies coach tells one who admitted she doesn't want her in trouble only the other one. Deal is worked with admittees father and coach to pay any cost not covered by insurance. Coach then files charges against other girl but wants first one to testify against the 2nd(girls are best-friends) Coach refuses to settle out of court and wants to proscute to the fullest. ?? What is admitees options and how can she not testify against friend. What is second girls charges and options! We are in CA state.
 


T

Tracey

Guest
1st girl has to testify if coach subpoenas her. She has to testify truthfully and completely. Coach will probably be allowed to treat her as a hostile witness. With 1st girl's testimony and the parent witness' testimony, 2nd girl will likely be convicted.

Both girls are guilty of vandalism. The degree of the crime depends on the amount of damage they caused. The damage amount is not split between them - each is liable for the entire amount. The parents are liable for the girls' fines if the girls can't pay themselves.

I think this is your current law, but I found the code confusing. Perhaps IAAL could double check me?


SEC. 1.1. Section 594 of the Penal Code is amended to read:
594. (a) Every person who maliciously commits any of the following acts with respect to any real or personal property not his or her own, in cases other than those specified by state law, is guilty of vandalism:
(1) Defaces with graffiti or other inscribed material.
(2) Damages.
(3) Destroys.
Whenever a person violates this subdivision with respect to real property, vehicles, signs, fixtures, or furnishings belonging to any public entity, as defined by Section 811.2 of the Government Code, or the federal government, it shall be a permissive inference that the person neither owned the property nor had the permission of the owner to deface, damage, or destroy the property.
(b) (1) If the amount of defacement, damage, or destruction is fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) or more, vandalism is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison or in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by a fine of not more than fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment.
(2) If the amount of defacement, damage, or destruction is five thousand dollars ($5,000) or more but less than fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), vandalism is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison, or in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by a fine of not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both that
fine and imprisonment.
(3) If the amount of defacement, damage, or destruction is four hundred dollars ($400) or more but less than five thousand dollars ($5,000), vandalism is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by a fine of five thousand dollars ($5,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment.
(4) (A) If the amount of defacement, damage, or destruction is less than four hundred dollars ($400), vandalism is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for not more than six months, or by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment.
(B) If the amount of defacement, damage, or destruction is less than four hundred dollars ($400), and the defendant has been previously convicted of vandalism or affixing graffiti or other inscribed material under Section 594, 594.3, 594.4, 640.5, 640.6, or 640.7, vandalism is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year, or by a fine of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000) or by both that fine and imprisonment.
(c) (1) Upon conviction of any person under this section for acts of vandalism consisting of defacing property with graffiti or other inscribed materials, the court may, in addition to any punishment imposed under subdivision (b), order the defendant to clean up, repair, or replace the damaged property himself or herself, or, if the jurisdiction has adopted a graffiti abatement program, order the defendant, and his or her parents or guardians if the defendant is a minor, to keep the damaged property or another specified property in the community free of graffiti for up to one year. Participation of a parent or guardian is not required under this subdivision if the court deems this participation to be detrimental to the defendant, or if the parent or guardian is a single parent who must care for young children.
(2) Any city, county, or city and county may enact an ordinance that provides all of the following:
(A) Upon conviction of any person pursuant to this section for acts of vandalism, the court may, in addition to any punishment imposed under subdivision (b), provided that the court determines that the defendant has the ability to pay any law enforcement costs not exceeding two hundred fifty dollars ($250), order the defendant to pay all or part of the costs not to exceed two hundred fifty dollars ($250) incurred by a law enforcement agency in identifying and apprehending the defendant. The law enforcement agency shall provide evidence of, and bear the burden of establishing, the reasonable costs that it incurred in identifying and apprehending the defendant.
(B) The law enforcement costs authorized to be paid pursuant to this subdivision are in addition to any other costs incurred or recovered by the law enforcement agency, and payment of these costs does not in any way limit, preclude, or restrict any other right, remedy, or action otherwise available to the law enforcement agency.
(d) If a minor is personally unable to pay a fine levied for acts prohibited by this section, the parent of that minor shall be liable for payment of the fine. A court may waive payment of the fine or any part thereof by the parent upon a finding of good cause.
(e) As used in this section, the term "graffiti or other inscribed material" includes any unauthorized inscription, word, figure, mark, or design that is written, marked, etched, scratched, drawn, or painted on real or personal property.
(f) As used in this section, "graffiti abatement program" means a program adopted by a city, county, or city and county by resolution or ordinance that provides for the administration and financing of graffiti removal, community education on the prevention of graffiti, and enforcement of graffiti laws.
(g) The court may order any person ordered to perform community service or graffiti removal pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) to undergo counseling.
(h) No amount paid by a defendant in satisfaction of a criminal matter shall be applied in satisfaction of the law enforcement costs that may be imposed pursuant to this section until all outstanding base fines, state and local penalty assessments, restitution orders, and restitution fines have been paid.
(i) This section shall remain in effect until January 1, 2002, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute that is enacted before January 1, 2002, deletes or extends that date.


So, assuming they caused $400 or more in damage to the paint job, the maximum sentence girls are looking at would be 1 year in jail, a $5000 fine, a $250 law enforcement fee, and counselling. There are probably also court costs. The parents are liable for the girls' fines.

Good luck,
Tracey



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This is not legal advice and you are not my client. Double check everything with your own attorney and your state's laws.
 

I AM ALWAYS LIABLE

Senior Member
My response:

Excellent analysis Tracey. While I agree with the analysis, I would dissent in the totality of the exposure to damages. I would only add the following: Since we only know it's a "car", and not its value, the scratching of the paint job could have, theoretically, "totalled" the car. In that instance, I looked to the following portion of the above-stated penal code, which states in pertinent part:

(c)(1) ". . . order the defendant, and his or her parents or guardians if the defendant is a minor, to keep the damaged property . . ."

So, in my theoretical analysis, the parents could wind up being ordered to "keep the car" which, then, opens the minors and the parents up to a Civil action.

On top of that, in most jurisdictions, a parent is also liable for the "purposeful and/or "malicious" acts of their minor, thus exposing the parents to being required, in addition to the criminal penalties outlined above, but also in addition, to pay for the value of the car and to pay a judgment for punitive damages levied against the minors in the Civil action.

It's alway nice to assist.

IAAL


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[This message has been edited by I AM ALWAYS LIABLE (edited April 15, 2000).]
 

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