Detectives working out of the Santa Clarita Sheriff Station are investigating a case of vandalism in Castaic. According to the report, several names were spray painted on the side of an apartment complex, with each name accompanied by its own derogatory slur. Regarding the names, 3 of them are known residents of the complex, and 2 are staff members who work in management of the property. While the names are accompanied by derogatory slurs, the incident is not currently being investigated as a hate crime, according to law enforcement.
Vandalism is covered under California Penal Code 594 PC, and is described as damaging, destroying, or defacing with graffiti a piece of someone else’s property. Penalties for vandalism will depend on the dollar amount of the damages done to the property in the case. If the damage is less than $400, charges are typically going to be misdemeanors. Once the cost of the damage exceeds $400, though, the law becomes a “wobbler,” meaning it can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the circumstances of the crime and the defendant’s prior criminal record (if any).
For felony cases, penalties include up to 3-years in county jail and fines of up to $10,000 or more, if the damage is extensive. Misdemeanor charges carry the possible penalties of up to 1-year in county jail and fines of up to $1,000.