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Mischief Charges

The Criminal Code of Canada captures numerous activities that would constitute mischief.  One commits mischief if one: 1) destroys or damages property; 2) renders property dangerous or useless; 3) obstructs, interrupts or interferes with any person in the lawful use, enjoyment or operation of property, or 4) obstructs, interrupts or interferes with any person in the lawful use, enjoyment or operation of property.  There are other forms of mischief and related offences.  For example, there can also be mischief to destroying or altering computer data.   Mischief, like Theft is separated into two categories – Mischief Under $5000.00 and Mischief Over $5000.00.  These categories relate to the value and monetary amount of the damages caused by the mischief.    The sentencing and penalties for mischief can range from a conditional discharge (not considered a criminal record) to 10 years in prison (depending on whether the Crown prosecutor elects summarily or by indictment).   One can also be held criminally responsible if they cause actual danger to life.  In such a case, the maximum term of imprisonment is life in prison.  Acts and incidents of mischief range from minor vandalism to serious manipulation with malice to someone else’s property(i.e., brakes in an automobile) that would put that person in real danger or peril.  If you are charged with Mischief in Ontario feel free to contact Baratz Law for a free confidential consultation to discuss your options. 

Newmarket Courthouse, York Region

Avi Baratz represents Accused charged with Mischief Across the Greater Toronto Area and Southern Ontario.  Mischief ranges in degrees and usually accompanies other charges.  See below for an example where Mr. Baratz successfully defend a mischief charge.  

Case Study

S.M. had a volatile history with an ex business associate of his, R.B.   In the past, R.B. had alleged that S.M. had assaulted him by punching and kicking him over a business dispute.   Mr. Baratz had convinced the Crown S.M. was defending himself at the time against an aggressive R.B.  The Crown withdrew these charges.  However, a few years later, R.B. alleged that S.M. had slashed his work van’s tires at 2 o’clock in the morning, thereby causing mischief to R.B’s van.  This was allegedly done outside of R.B.’s residence in a quiet suburban neighborhood.  Furthermore, R.B. had alleged that S.M. had been hiding in the bushes in order to get R.B. back for the earlier charges.   When R.B. had awoken in the middle of the night and gone outside to investigate what had occurred to his van, it was alleged that S.M. had appeared literally out of the bushes and waved a switchblade towards R.B. and threatened death.  S.M. allegedly ran away after, not expecting R.B. to investigate at 2 o’clock in the morning.  Oddly enough, according to R.B., he apparently chased after S.M. but S.M. managed to get away.  At trial, Mr. Baratz attacked R.B.’s recollection of the events and his ability to identify the perpetrator.  Identify became a major issue at play in the trial.   S.M. was found not guilty and acquitted of all charges after trial.     

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