Title 11
Criminal Offenses

Chapter 44
Trespass and Vandalism

R.I. Gen. Laws § 11-44-21.1

§ 11-44-21.1. Graffiti — Defacing private residences, offices, businesses or commercial property.

(a)(1) Every person who shall willfully, maliciously or mischievously write upon, paint, or otherwise deface the private property or residence of another, any office building, business or commercial property or public building or public property, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, for the first and second offense, said penalty shall not exceed a one thousand dollars ($1,000) fine and community service not exceeding two hundred (200) hours. Every person convicted of a third or subsequent offense under this section shall be guilty of a felony, subject to imprisonment not exceeding two (2) years, a fine of up to two thousand dollars ($2,000), and shall be required to perform up to three hundred (300) hours of community service. The court, upon conviction or adjudication, shall order restitution to the victim in the amount of removal, repair, or replacement costs.

(2) If the graffiti is positioned on an overpass or an underpass and requires that traffic be interfered with in order to remove it, or the entity responsible for the area in which the clean-up is to take place must provide assistance in order for the removal to take place safely, the court shall order an additional assessment of one thousand dollars ($1,000).

(b) If the person is a minor, upon adjudication, in addition to the penalties in subsection (a):

(1) The family court may, in addition to any other order or decree the court makes under this chapter, order the division of motor vehicles to:

(i) Suspend the minor’s operator’s license; or

(ii) Invalidate the minor’s learner’s permit; for one year beginning the date of the order.

(2) Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, the family court may order the parent or legal guardian of any minor found to have committed the crime of graffiti, to submit restitution to the victim or victims of such graffiti by payment in money if the minor is in the custody of and residing with such parent or guardian, and if the family court finds, after hearing, that the graffiti was a direct result of the parent or legal guardian having neglected to exercise reasonable supervision and control of the minor’s conduct. For the purposes of this section, liability for compensation shall be limited to ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

(3) If the person violates the family court’s order to submit restitution under this section, such person shall be guilty of contempt. The court may permit payments under this section to be made in installments, for a period of up to seven (7) years, to be administered by the court.

History of Section.
P.L. 2007, ch. 311, § 1; P.L. 2013, ch. 497, § 1; P.L. 2013, ch. 508, § 1.