At Meyer Van Severen, S.C. we take arson criminal defense seriously.

Arson cases are serious.  At the criminal defense law firm Meyer Van Severen, S.C. we provide the aggressive, intelligent criminal defense needed by individuals accused of arson.  Criminal defense attorneys Benjamin T. Van Severen and Matthew R. Meyer are top Wisconsin attorneys poised to defend you against an arson case.  We believe that hiring the best Wisconsin criminal defense attorneys is crucial to success in your case.  To speak to a top Milwaukee criminal defense attorney, contact our defense firm at (414) 270-0202 immediately.


What is arson?

Arson in Wisconsin is broken down into three separate charges.  Arson of buildings; damage of property by explosives is one version.  Another is arson of property other than building.  Finally, arson with intent to defraud is the third version of Wisconsin arson.


Arson of buildings; damage of property by explosives

Section 943.02 of the Wisconsin Statutes prohibits arson of buildings and property damage caused by explosives.  The statute indicates that this arson charge is a Class C felony.  It’s proven a few ways:

  • By means of fire, the defendant intentionally damages any building of another without consent; or
  • By means of fire, the defendant intentionally damages any building with intent to defraud an insurer of the building; or
  • By means of explosives, the defendant intentionally damages any property of another without the owner’s consent.

Building of another means a building in which a person other than the actor has a legal or equitable interest which the actor has no right to defeat or impair, even though the actor may also have a legal or equitable interest in the building.

An insurance policy isn’t a defense to this crime.  If the defendant recovered on an insurance policy connected to the building, there’s not immunity.  The focus is still on whether someone other than the defendant had a legal/equitable interest in the property.


Arson of property other than building

Arson of property other than a building is prohibited by section 943.03 of the Wisconsin Statutes.  This version of arson is a Class I felony and carries a potential $10,000.00 fine along with 3 1/2 years in prison.

Arson of property other than building is defined as when the defendant “by means of fire, intentionally damages any property of another without the person’s consent, if the property is not a building and has a value of $100 or more…”

Our criminal defense attorneys believe it’s important that your attorney understand the complex definitions or arson.  At our criminal defense firm we do.  The final version of arson focuses on felony arson with intent to defraud.


Arson with intent to defraud

Arson with intent to defraud is discussed in section 943.04 of the Wisconsin Statutes.  It’s a Class H felony and carries a 6 year prison sentence along with a $10,000.00 fine.

The State must show that the defendant “by means of fire, damages any property, other than a building, with intent to defraud an insurer of that property…”  Again, like the arson of buildings charge, it isn’t a defense that the defendant actually recovered any portion of an insurance policy.


Contact Meyer Van Severen, S.C. for arson defense

Arson charges carry serious felony penalties.  At criminal defense law firm Meyer Van Severen, S.C. we understand the issues involved with these criminal charges.  Our criminal defense lawyers regularly file motions challenging illegal police conduct.  If there’s a motion issue in your case, we’ll do that same.  Our attorneys believe that it’s imperative you hire top Wisconsin criminal defense attorneys to defend your arson case.

Contact Meyer Van Severen, S.C. at (414) 270-0202 to discuss your criminal case.