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Criminal Damage

The offence of criminal damage involves damaging or destroying the property of others and is covered in law by the Criminal Damage Act 1971.

The offence of criminal damage involves someone without lawful excuse:

  • destroying or damaging any property, belonging to another.
  • intending to destroy or damage such property.
  • being reckless as to whether any such property would be destroyed or damaged.


The Criminal Damage Act also states that where the criminal damage is caused by a fire, the offence will be treated as arson.

There is a further offence if the fire damage results in endangering life.

Report it

If the criminal damage is in progress, dial 999 immediately.

To report criminal damage fill in the Report a Crime or Incident form, call 101 or visit a police station in person.