Criminal mischief; penalty.
(1) A person commits criminal mischief if he or she:
(a) Damages property of another intentionally or recklessly; or
(b) Intentionally tampers with property of another so as to endanger person or property; or
(c) Intentionally or maliciously causes another to suffer pecuniary loss by deception or threat.
(2) Criminal mischief is a Class IV felony if the actor intentionally or maliciously causes pecuniary loss of five thousand dollars or more, or a substantial interruption or impairment of public communication, transportation, supply of water, gas, or power, or other public service.
(3) Criminal mischief is a Class I misdemeanor if the actor intentionally or maliciously causes pecuniary loss of one thousand five hundred dollars or more but less than five thousand dollars.
(4) Criminal mischief is a Class II misdemeanor if the actor intentionally or maliciously causes pecuniary loss of five hundred dollars or more but less than one thousand five hundred dollars.
(5) Criminal mischief is a Class III misdemeanor if the actor intentionally, maliciously, or recklessly causes pecuniary loss in an amount of less than five hundred dollars, or if his or her action results in no pecuniary loss.
Source:Laws 1977, LB 38, § 118; Laws 1982, LB 347, § 9; Laws 2002, LB 82, § 4; Laws 2015, LB605, § 31.
Unlawful interference with utility poles and wires, penalty, see section 76-2325.01.
Ownership of property is not an essential element of criminal mischief and is immaterial except to identify property as not that of the accused. State v. Flye, 245 Neb. 495, 513 N.W.2d 526 (1994).
Regarding the grades of criminal mischief, existence and amount of pecuniary loss are questions for the fact finder. A specific monetary amount, alleged in conjunction with "pecuniary loss" resulting from criminal mischief informs the court and the defendant the grade of offense charged and the potential punishment on conviction. "Pecuniary loss" as used in this section means monetary loss suffered by another as the result of the defendant's conduct which constitutes criminal mischief. State v. Pierce, 231 Neb. 966, 439 N.W.2d 435 (1989).
A violation of subsection (4) of this section is a petty offense for which a defendant has a statutory, but not constitutional, right to a jury trial. State v. Lafler, 224 Neb. 613, 399 N.W.2d 808 (1987).
A factual basis existed for the finding that property alleged to have been feloniously destroyed exceeded three hundred dollars in value when, in the presentence report, damage caused by the defendant was estimated to total in excess of two thousand two hundred dollars. State v. Richter, 220 Neb. 551, 371 N.W.2d 125 (1985).