CHAPTER 541

Property Offenses

541.01 Determining property value in arson.
541.02 Arson.
541.03 Criminal damaging or endangering.
541.04 Criminal mischief.
541.05 Criminal trespass.
541.051 Aggravated trespass.
541.06 Destruction of shrubs, trees or crops.
541.07 Desecration.
541.08 Ethnic intimidation.
541.09 Posting signs without consent of owner.
541.99 Penalty.

CROSS REFERENCES

See sectional histories for similar State law
Parents' liability for destructive acts of their
children - see Ohio R.C. 3109.09
Physical harm to property defined - see GEN. OFF. 501.01(d), (f)
Reimbursement for investigation or prosecution costs - see GEN. OFF. 501.99(a)
Damage to sidewalks - see GEN. OFF. 521.04
Vehicle trespass - see GEN. OFF. 545.06


541.01 DETERMINING PROPERTY VALUE IN ARSON.

(a) The following criteria shall be used in determining the value of property or amount of physical harm involved in a violation of Section 541.02.

(1) If the property is an heirloom, memento, collector's item, antique, museum piece, manuscript, document, record or other thing that is either irreplaceable or is replaceable only on the expenditure of substantial time, effort or money, the value of the property or the amount of physical harm involved is the amount that would compensate the owner for its loss.

(2) If the property is not covered under subsection (a)(1) hereof, and the physical harm is such that the property can be restored substantially to its former condition, the amount of physical harm involved is the reasonable cost of restoring the property.

(3) If the property is not covered under subsection (a)(1) hereof, and the physical harm is such that the property cannot be restored substantially to its former condition, the value of the property, in the case of personal property, is the cost of replacing the property with new property of like kind and quality, and in the case of real property or real property fixtures, is the difference in the fair market value of the property immediately before and immediately after the offense.

(b) As used in this section, "fair market value" has the same meaning as in Section 545.02(c)(3).

(c) Prima-facie evidence of the value of property, as provided in Section 545.02(d) may be used to establish the value of property pursuant to this section. (ORC 2909.11)


541.02 ARSON.

(a) No person, by means of fire or explosion, shall knowingly cause or create a substantial risk of physical harm to any property of another without the other person?s consent.

(b) This section does not apply if the violation is done with purpose to defraud or the property involved is a statehouse or a courthouse, school building or other building or structure that is owned or controlled by the State, any political subdivision, or any department, agency or instrumentality of the State or a political subdivision, and that is used for public purposes.

(c) Whoever violates this section is guilty of arson, a misdemeanor of the first degree. If the value of the property or the amount of physical harm involved is five hundred dollars ($500.00) or more, arson is a felony and shall be prosecuted under appropriate State law. (ORC 2909.03)


541.03 CRIMINAL DAMAGING OR ENDANGERING.

(a) No person shall cause, or create a substantial risk of physical harm to any property of another without the other person?s consent:

(1) Knowingly, by any means;

(2) Recklessly, by means of fire, explosion, flood, poison gas, poison, radioactive material, caustic or corrosive material, or other inherently dangerous agency or substance.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of criminal damaging or endangering, a misdemeanor of the second degree. If violation of this section creates a risk of physical harm to any person, criminal damaging or endangering is a misdemeanor of the first degree. If the property involved in a violation is an aircraft, an aircraft engine, propeller, appliance, spare part, or any other equipment or implement used or intended to be used in the operation of an aircraft and if the violation creates a risk of physical harm to any person or if the property involved in a violation is an occupied aircraft, crimimal damaging or endangering is a felony and shall be prosecuted under appropriate State law. (ORC 2909.06)


541.04 CRIMINAL MISCHIEF.

(a) No person shall:

(1) Without privilege to do so, knowingly move, deface, damage, destroy or otherwise improperly tamper with the property of another;

(2) With purpose to interfere with the use or enjoyment of property of another employ a tear gas device, stink bomb, smoke generator or other device releasing a substance that is harmful or offensive to persons exposed, or that tends to cause public alarm;

(3) Without privilege to do so, knowingly move, deface, damage, destroy or otherwise improperly tamper with a bench mark, triangulation station, boundary marker or other survey station, monument or marker.

(4) Without privilege to do so, knowingly move, deface, damage, destroy or otherwise improperly tamper with any safety device, the property of another or the property of the offender when required or placed for the safety of others, so as to destroy or diminish its effectiveness or availability for its intended purpose;

(5) With purpose to interfere with the use or enjoyment of the property of another, set a fire on the land of another or place personal property that has been set on fire on the land of another, which fire or personal property is outside and apart from any building, other structure or personal property that is on that land.

(b) As used in this section, "safety device" means any fire extinguisher, fire hose or fire axe, or any fire escape, emergency exit or emergency escape equipment, or any life line, life-saving ring, life preserver or life boat or raft, or any alarm, light, flare, signal, sign or notice intended to warn of danger, or emergency, or intended for other safety purposes, or any guard railing or safety barricade, or any traffic sign or signal, or any railroad grade crossing sign, signal or gate, or any first aid or survival equipment, or any other device, apparatus, or equipment intended for protecting or preserving the safety of persons or property.

(c) Whoever violates this section is guilty of criminal mischief, a misdemeanor of the third degree. If violation of this section creates a risk of physical harm to any person, criminal mischief is a misdemeanor of the first degree. If the property involved in a violation of this section is an aircraft, an aircraft engine, propeller, appliance, spare part, fuel, lubricant, hydraulic fluid, any other equipment, implement, or material used or intended to be used in the operation of an aircraft, or any cargo carried or intended to be carried in an aircraft and if the violation creates a risk of physical harm to any person or if the property involved in a violation of this section is an occupied aircraft, criminal mischief is a felony and shall be prosecuted under appropriate State law. (ORC 2909.07)


541.05 CRIMINAL TRESPASS.

(a) No person, without privilege to do so, shall do any of the following:

(1) Knowingly enter or remain on the land or premises of another;

(2) Knowingly enter or remain on the land or premises of another, the use of which is lawfully restricted to certain persons, purposes, modes or hours, when the offender knows he is in violation of any such restriction or is reckless in that regard;

(3) Recklessly enter or remain on the land or premises of another, as to which notice against unauthorized access or presence is given by actual communication to the offender, or in a manner prescribed by law, or by posting in a manner reasonably calculated to come to the attention of potential intruders, or by fencing or other enclosure manifestly designed to restrict access;

(4) Being on the land or premises of another, negligently fail or refuse to leave upon being notified to do so by the owner or occupant, or the agent or servant of either.

(b) It is no defense to a charge under this section that the land or premises involved was owned, controlled or in custody of a public agency.

(c) It is no defense to a charge under this section that the offender was authorized to enter or remain on the land or premises involved when such authorization was secured by deception.

(d) Whoever violates this section is guilty of criminal trespass, a misdemeanor of the fourth degree.

(e) As used in this section, "land or premises" includes any land, building, structure or place belonging to, controlled by or in custody of another, and any separate enclosure or room, or portion thereof. (ORC 2911.21)


541.051 AGGRAVATED TRESPASS.

(a) No person shall enter or remain on the land or premises of another with purpose to commit on that land or those premises a misdemeanor, the elements of which involve causing physical harm to another person or causing another person to believe that the offender will cause physical harm to him.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of aggravated trespass, a misdemeanor of the first degree. (ORC 2911.211)


541.06 DESTRUCTION OF SHRUBS, TREES OR CROPS.

(a) No person, without privilege to do so, shall recklessly cut down, destroy, girdle or otherwise injure a vine, bush, shrub, sapling, tree or crop standing or growing on the land of another or upon public land.

(b) In addition to any penalty provided, whoever violates this section is liable in treble damages for the injury caused. (ORC 901.51)

(c) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree. (ORC 901.99(A))


541.07 DESECRATION.

(a) No person, without privilege to do so, shall purposely deface, damage, pollute or otherwise physically mistreat any of the following:

(1) The flag of the United States or of this State;

(2) Any public monument;

(3) Any historical or commemorative marker, or any structure, Indian mound or earthwork, cemetery, thing or site of great historical or archeological interest;

(4) A place of worship, its furnishings or religious artifacts or sacred texts within the place of worship;

(5) A work of art or museum piece;

(6) Any other object of reverence or sacred devotion.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of desecration. A violation of subsection (a)(1) to (3), (5) or (6) hereof is a misdemeanor of the second degree. Violation of subsection (a)(4) hereof is a misdemeanor of the first degree that is punishable by a fine of up to four thousand dollars ($4,000) in addition to the penalties specified for a misdemeanor of the first degree in Section 501.99.

(c) As used in this section, ?cemetery? means any place of burial and includes burial sites that contain American Indian burial objects placed with or containing American Indian human remains. (ORC 2927.11)


541.08 ETHNIC INTIMIDATION.

(a) No person shall violate Ohio R.C. 2903.21, 2903.22, 2909.06, 2909.07 or 2917.21(A)(3) to (5) or Sections 537.05, 537.06, 537.10(a)(3) to (5), 541.03 or 541.04 of the General Offenses Code by reason of the race, color, religion or national origin of another person or group of persons.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of ethnic intimidation. Ethnic intimidation is an offense of the next higher degree than the offense the commission of which is a necessary element of ethnic intimidation. (ORC 2927.12)


541.09 POSTING SIGNS WITHOUT CONSENT OF OWNER.

(a) No person shall paint, print, paste, stencil or otherwise mark, place upon or affix to a building, fence, wall, vehicle, post, pole, tree, billboard, sidewalk or street, or other similar structure, whether public or private, without the consent of the owner, lessee or agent in charge, a word, letter, character, figure, sentence or device or a handbill, notice, advertisement, sign or poster.

(b) This section does not apply to the posting of a handbill or notice of public sale by a sheriff, administrator, executor or licensed auctioneer or a notice required by law to be posted.
(Ord. 1077. Passed 7-7-83.)

(c) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the third degree.


541.99 PENALTY.

(EDITOR'S NOTE: See Section 501.99 for penalties applicable to any misdemeanor classification.)


Home Page Ordinance Index