DESTRUCTION OF PROPERTY
634:2 Criminal Mischief.
I. A person is guilty of criminal mischief who, having no right to do so nor any reasonable basis for belief of having such a right, purposely or recklessly damages the property of another, or who causes permanent or temporary damage to public property including vandalism, defacement, destruction, tampering with, or any other unauthorized alteration to public property.
II. Criminal mischief is a class B felony if the actor purposely causes or attempts to cause:
(a) Pecuniary loss in excess of $1,500; or
(b) A substantial interruption or impairment of public communication, transportation, supply of water, gas, or power, or other public service; or
(c) Discharge of a firearm at an occupied structure, as defined in RSA 635:1, III; or
(d) Damage to private or public property, real or personal, when the actor knows that the property has historical, cultural, or sentimental value that cannot be restored by repair or replacement.
II-a. Criminal mischief is a class A misdemeanor if the actor purposely causes or attempts to cause pecuniary loss in excess of $100 and not more than $1,500.
III. All other criminal mischief is a misdemeanor.
IV. As used in this section, "property" has the same meaning as in RSA 637:2, I; "property of another" has the same meaning as in RSA 637:2, IV.
IV-a. As used in this section, "public property" means any property that is not privately owned, including state or municipal property, or statues, monuments, or natural geological formations, sites, or rock surfaces located on public property that have been designated by the state or one of its political subdivisions or the federal government as a natural area or landmark.
V. For purposes of determining pecuniary loss under subparagraph II(a), amounts involved in acts committed pursuant to one scheme or course of conduct participated in by the actor may be aggregated in determining the grade of the offense.
VI. Any person who is found guilty of criminal mischief under paragraph III of this section because he or she has vandalized, defaced, destroyed, tampered with, or made any other unauthorized alteration, whether permanent or temporary, on public property, shall be guilty of a violation and shall also make restitution for any damage he or she has caused.
VII. If the court determines that a motor vehicle was used to abet the commission of the act constituting criminal mischief, the court may suspend, for a period not to exceed 90 days, the driver's license of a person who is convicted of criminal mischief, or the driver's licenses of persons who are convicted of criminal mischief.
VIII. Any person who is found guilty of criminal mischief under this section because the person has purposely or recklessly damaged an emergency vehicle, emergency apparatus, or private vehicle containing emergency equipment, shall be liable for full restitution to the injured party.
IX. Any person who is found guilty of criminal mischief under this section because such person is a tenant, or a guest of such tenant, in a rental dwelling who has destroyed, disconnected, or otherwise rendered inoperable any smoke detector in the rental dwelling, or who has attempted the same in a rental dwelling, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.
Source. 1971, 518:1. 1985, 201:1. 1986, 98:1. 1987, 182:1. 1991, 35:1. 1992, 269:12. 1996, 225:27. 1997, 327:2. 2001, 283:1. 2003, 290:1. 2009, 193:1. 2010, 239:1. 2012, 133:1, eff. Jan. 1, 2013. 2020, 12:17-19, eff. Jan. 1, 2021.