What Penal Code Governs Making a False Report of a Fire?
Making a false report of fire is governed under Penal Code 148.4. Under this penal code, it is illegal to do any of the following willfully and maliciously:
- Tamper with or break a fire alarm or fire protection equipment;
- Trigger a false fire alarm;
- Make a false fire report;
- Send, give, transmit, or sound a false fire alarm.
What Are the Penalties Involved for Violation of Penal Code 148.4?
The penalties involved in violating the penal code for making a false report of a fire can either be prosecuted as a felony or a misdemeanor.
When is a Violation of Penal Code 148.4 Considered a Felony?
Violation of the penal code is considered a felony when an individual willfully and maliciously does the following:
- Sends, gives, transmits, sounds any type of false fire alarm by using a fire alarm system or other means;
- That results in either great bodily injury and/or death.
The penalties that an individual would face here are listed under subdivision (h) of Section 1170. Additionally, an individual can also pay fines of up to $10,000.
When is a Violation of Penal Code 148.4 Considered a Misdemeanor?
Essentially, violation of the penal code is considered a misdemeanor when an individual does the same acts as listed above. However, the difference here is that there are no deaths or great bodily injury that results from the individual’s acts.
The penalties that an individual can face include up to one year in county jail and/or paying fines of up to $1,000.
What Does Willful and Malicious Mean for Purposes of Penal Code 148.4?
To do something willfully means that the individual intended to do the illegal act on purpose. Additionally, to do something maliciously means that the individual’s purposeful conduct was intended to either injure, annoy, or otherwise do something wrong.
Can a Conviction of Penal Code 148.4 be Expunged?
A Penal Code 148.4 PC conviction can be expunged if it was charged as a misdemeanor. On the other hand, a felony conviction that resulted in serving time in state prison would not qualify for an expunged.
Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney
If you or someone you know has been charged with violating Penal Code Section 148.4, contact our Los Angeles criminal defense attorney at 310-933-5171 for a free consultation.