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Steven  K.
Steven K., Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 2367
Experience:  I have practiced family law since 1996, focusing on child custody and domestic violence
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Yesterday my brother in law and cousin came over in our apartment

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Yesterday my brother in law and cousin came over in our apartment and offered to clean and organize our place, my own family is currently living with my parents, however they began to throw our personal stuff and belongings especially my private documents such as bills invoice with SS#, personal stuff with sentimental values, kids toys and took their clothings without permission. My wife and I are very upset and would like to file a police report. I would like to press charge for destruction/stolen property and would like to get barred in our apartment forever.

Steven Kincaid :

Thank you for allowing me to assist you.

Steven Kincaid :

What legal information an I provide for you?

Customer :

Can I press charge for destruction.stolen property, my wife and I are very upset for what happen and it is really hurtful to us espcially for telling the kids that their stuff is gone. I would like them to get barred to our apartment

Steven Kincaid :

What state are you in?

Customer :

California

Customer :

r u there?

Steven Kincaid :

You may be able to get a civil harassment restraining order against them to keep them away from your home. The California definition for harassment is repeated actions (such as following you, making harassing telephone calls, or sending harassing emails) that seriously alarm, annoy, or harass you, and that serve no legitimate purpose and causes you to be extremely emotionally upset (distressed)

Steven Kincaid :

Sorry, I was preparing my answer.

Steven Kincaid :

You may certainly report the theft and harm to your property to the police. Just know that in California, particularly in urban areas, the police are not highly reactive to non-dangerous crimes.

Steven Kincaid :

The crime of malicious mischief is defined as follows:

Steven Kincaid :

PENAL CODE
SECTION 594-625c
594. (a) Every person who maliciously commits any of the following acts with respect to any real or personal property not his or her own, in cases other than those specified by state law, is guilty of
vandalism:
(1) Defaces with graffiti or other inscribed material.
(2) Damages.
(3) Destroys.

Steven Kincaid :

If the amount of defacement, damage, or destruction is four hundred dollars ($400) or more, vandalism is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison or in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by a fine of not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or if the amount of defacement, damage, or destruction is ten thousand dollars ($10,000) or more, by a fine of not more than fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment.

Steven Kincaid :

If the amount of defacement, damage, or destruction is less than four hundred dollars ($400), vandalism is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment.

Customer :

what should I do next? small claim court

Steven Kincaid :

That is an option to seek compensatory damages for the expenses they caused you.

Steven Kincaid :

What county are you in?

Customer :

san mateo

Steven Kincaid :

Here is a good page on small claims actions in California. And here is a link for the San Mateo County Small Claims Advisor, which is a free service.

Customer :

Thank you very much and Happy New Year!

Steven Kincaid :

Happy New Year!

Steven Kincaid :

I would be happy to answer additional questions, but if you are done and you do not plan on requesting a refund of your JustAnswer deposit, I would appreciate if you could click the green ACCEPT button as I do not get paid unless you do so. Thank you!

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