Sunday, September 18, 2005
Case Law Development: Defendant Convicted of Destroying Property “of Another” even though he owned a Marital Interest in the Vandalized Property
A Missouri criminal defendant failed in his attempt to use the concept of marital property to exempt him from liability for a crime against his wife. The Court of Appeals of Missouri upheld the conviction of Husband for criminal property damage, for vandalizing a motor vehicle titled in the name of his wife. Husband claimed that an essential element of the offense required that the defendant have damaged property "of another." He argued that, because he had a marital interest in the motor vehicle he was charged with damaging, he could not be found guilty of the offense. The court disagreed, citing cases from several other jurisdictions interpreting “property of another” in similar circumstances.
State v. Brushwood, 2005 Mo. App. LEXIS 1319 (September 13, 2005) Available on the web at http://www.osca.state.mo.us/courts/pubopinions.nsf/0/fb9c7914e49100208625707a00646649?OpenDocument (Last visited September 17, 2005 bgf)