Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Egg and I or when a prank isn't

I'm going to tell you a story...

So you're a teenager, you're bored and looking for something to occupy your ADD infected brain.  Your misdirected creativity leads  you to the local grocery store where you plunk down a couple of bucks for a dozen eggs and off you go.  You think how cool it would be to empty that cardboard carton on a few neighborhood cars and steal off into the night giggling as you go.

Here's the thing, You've just committed a crime and the law doesn't take it lightly. 

It's called criminal damage and the minute that egg impacts your neighbor's car you're guilty of it. Why? because it's more than just an adolescent prank.  Your actions are going to cost me money to correct and in some cases that's going to be "a lot" of money.

Egging a car can potentially destroy the paint finish, cause body damage similar to hail and cost thousands to repair.  If your victim doesn't notice the dried yolk soon enought it could take the services of an auto detailer at the minimum to repair the paint finish. 

If the egg was solid enough to chip the clearcoat finish when it impacted you're looking at $250 to $1000 in repairs.  You can't repair clearcoat, you have to repaint the entire panel.  Once the clearcoat finish is broken it will eventually start to peel.  You've probably seen cars that look like they've got a peeling sunburn.  That's the clearcoat coming off and the start of it was something making a break in it like a rock, scratch or in this example, an egg.

Your night of fun caused that and if it costs me money to fix it and I catch you, you can bet I'm going to get compensated one way or another.  That's called consequences.

Ah yes, kids will be kids and do stupid things but part of being a kid is learning what the rules are and that there are consequences for your actions.  Newton's third law says for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction even if it's not immediately felt.

In Arizona criminal damage is defined as the following:

A.     Damaging or defacing the property of another (This is what you did)
B.     Tampering with someone else’s property to impair its function or reduce its value, (You did this too)
C.     Tampering with utility property (gas, water, telephone, etc),
D.     Parking your vehicle to block livestock from getting access to water, or
E.      Graffiti on a public or private building.

At least in Arizona depending on what it costs your "Victim" you're facing the following:

Cost of repair
Seriousness of Crime
$10,000 or more
Class 4 Felony
1 ½ to 3 years in prison
$2,000- $10,000
Class 5 Felony
8 months to 2 years in prison
$250- $2,000
Class 6 Felony
6 to 18 months in prison
Less than $250
Class 2 Misdemeanor
Up to 4 months in jail and $750 fine

That could be a really expensive carton of eggs if you're caught.  Think about that the next time you think an egg is just an egg as it hurtles through the air.