Florida Home Damaged by Fire Leaves the Question: What is Arson?

FiremanA recent report of a home in Jacksonville being damaged by fire leaves me with the question on my mind of Arson. The report states that Fire and Rescue were dispatched to a Florida home after smoke and flames coming from within the home. Although the fire was extinguished rather quickly, the resulting damage was extensive. The cause of the fire is still being investigated. But leads me to question whether this is a case of Arson or not.

In Florida, Arson is defined by Florida Statute ยง 806.01, which reads “any person who willfully and unlawfully, or while in the commission of any felony, by fire or explosion, damages or causes to be damaged: any dwelling…any structure…any other structure that he or she knew or has reasonable grounds to believe was occupied by a human being.” If convicted for Arson it is a Felony in the first-degree, which holds a penalty of up to 30 years in prison and/or up to a $10000 fine. In contrast, if you commit Arson against property of your own, it is a second degree-felony punishable by 15 years in prison and up to a $10000 fine.

Although this Fire investigation is still in its initial stages, if the homeowners are found to have intentionally set the fire, they could be facing a second-degree felony charge. If on the hand, someone else set the fire, they could potentially face a first-degree felony charge. Or it could just be an accidental fire and no charges will be brought.

A Jacksonville Arson charge is a serious criminal offense with serious penalties. The advice and counsel of a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer could prove invaluable. If you are facing a Jacksonville Arson charge or any other Jacksonville Criminal Offense, contact a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer to discuss your case and to make sure you and your rights are being protected.

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