Criminal Mischief Conviction Upheld, Probation Term Sentence Reversed

General Criminal Defense

Kelly L. Rooth, Shareholder
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Criminal Mischief Conviction Upheld, Probation Term Sentence Reversed

On June 26, 2009, in Smith v. State, Pinellas Circuit Court Judge R. Timothy Peters affirmed Gail Laverne Smith’s conviction of Criminal Mischief, a second degree misdemeanor, and reversed her sentence.

The victim’s car had been scratched while the victim and Smith were dating the same man.  The victim testified Smith had called her repeatedly that day and Smith testified the victim had called her about ten times.  The victim testified that in one phone conversation, Smith said, “Who scratched your car?”  The victim responded, “You’re a dumb-A.”  Smith then said, “That’s right, B, and there’s more to come.”  The jury found Smith guilty and the trial court placed her on probation for twelve months.

Smith moved for a judgment of acquittal based on the argument that the State failed to prove identity.  The trial court disagreed with that argument because the State established a prima facie case of guilt: the victim testified her car had been scratched twice, the police officer saw the damage to the car, photographs of damage were admitted into evidence, the victim testified regarding repeated phone calls and incriminating statements on the calls.  Smith’s request for judgment of acquittal was denied.  Because Smith’s probation term exceeded the statutory maximum, her sentence was reversed.

If you have any questions about your Criminal Mischief charge or any other misdemeanor, contact St. Petersburg criminal defense attorneys at Rooth Law Group today.

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