In fact, this state has laid down very strict laws pertaining to arson. In order to be considered in the category of Class C felony, there is no need for a building to be completely destroyed and just being damaged will suffice. There is no compulsion that the building in question has to be occupied when the incident took place.
In case, the aim of detonating an explosive or setting fire in a building was for bringing in some kind of change in the political scene or to intimidate, investigations can be conducted against the accused as one of the domestic terrorists.
Defining arson in Wisconsin
The state has statutes in place for defining arson. In Wisconsin, damage of property using explosives or arson of buildings is committed when a person or person(s) commits any of the below-listed acts:
Damages any property of another individual intentionally by using explosives without the consent of the latter or
Damages any building intentionally with an intention to cheat an insurer who had insured the building in question, or
Sets up a fire to damage someone else's building intentionally without the consent of the other person.
Here, the building of some other person refers to a structure wherein an individual who, apart from the accused has an equitable or legal interest and the accused does not have any right to impair or defeat although the accused in question might also have an equitable or legal interest in that building.
Also, the prosecution should establish that the accused had tried to recover or recovered an insurance policy by reasoning out that the breakout of fire was relevant. However, it is not necessary to prove that the accused had the intention of defrauding the insurance company.
Arson of any other property type apart from a building in Wisconsin
When a person causes damage to any kind of property intentionally by setting up a fire without the consent of the latter, it is also arson. The property in question might not be a building, as well as, should have a minimum value of 100 USD.
The intention of committing arson in Wisconsin
In case a person had placed a combustible item with the intention of setting fire or blowing up some property and yet is interrupted or does not follow through, such an offense may be charged in different ways based on the details of the case like the kind of property, its owner, whether it was a building, and the aim of such an attempt.
When arson is committed with injury in Wisconsin
When the fire causes injury to someone, they can sue the alleged culprit for damages. The amount, which is usually given to the affected will be tripled, which would include the fees of their attorney. Additionally, the person if proven guilty should pay fine as a penalty for committing the arson itself.
Penalties for arson in Wisconsin
Damage of a property or arson of buildings is regarded as a Class C felony in the state and is penalized by a maximum fine of 100,000 USD and a maximum jail term of 40 years.
Arson of any other property, which is not a building is regarded as a Class I felony wherein the guilty has to serve a maximum prison term of 3.5 years. They might also have to pay a maximum fine of 10,000 USD.
When a person commits arson with the intention to defraud, it is regarded as a Class H felony wherein the jail term can be a maximum of 6 years and the highest penalty amount can be 10,000 USD.