Code Section Group

Penal Code - PEN

PART 1. OF CRIMES AND PUNISHMENTS [25 - 680]

  ( Part 1 enacted 1872. )

TITLE 13. OF CRIMES AGAINST PROPERTY [450 - 593g]

  ( Title 13 enacted 1872. )

CHAPTER 1. Arson [450 - 457.1]
  ( Chapter 1 enacted 1872. )

450.
  

In this chapter, the following terms have the following meanings:

(a) “Structure” means any building, or commercial or public tent, bridge, tunnel, or powerplant.

(b) “Forest land” means any brush covered land, cut-over land, forest, grasslands, or woods.

(c) “Property” means real property or personal property, other than a structure or forest land.

(d) “Inhabited” means currently being used for dwelling purposes whether occupied or not. “Inhabited structure” and “inhabited property” do not include the real property on which an inhabited structure or an inhabited property is located.

(e) “Maliciously” imports a wish to vex, defraud, annoy, or injure another person, or an intent to do a wrongful act, established either by proof or presumption of law.

(f) “Recklessly” means a person is aware of and consciously disregards a substantial and unjustifiable risk that his or her act will set fire to, burn, or cause to burn a structure, forest land, or property. The risk shall be of such nature and degree that disregard thereof constitutes a gross deviation from the standard of conduct that a reasonable person would observe in the situation. A person who creates such a risk but is unaware thereof solely by reason of voluntary intoxication also acts recklessly with respect thereto.

(Added by Stats. 1979, Ch. 145.)

451.
  

A person is guilty of arson when he or she willfully and maliciously sets fire to or burns or causes to be burned or who aids, counsels, or procures the burning of, any structure, forest land, or property.

(a) Arson that causes great bodily injury is a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for five, seven, or nine years.

(b) Arson that causes an inhabited structure or inhabited property to burn is a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, five, or eight years.

(c) Arson of a structure or forest land is a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for two, four, or six years.

(d) Arson of property is a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for 16 months, two, or three years. For purposes of this paragraph, arson of property does not include one burning or causing to be burned his or her own personal property unless there is an intent to defraud or there is injury to another person or another person’s structure, forest land, or property.

(e) In the case of any person convicted of violating this section while confined in a state prison, prison road camp, prison forestry camp, or other prison camp or prison farm, or while confined in a county jail while serving a term of imprisonment for a felony or misdemeanor conviction, any sentence imposed shall be consecutive to the sentence for which the person was then confined.

(Amended by Stats. 1994, Ch. 421, Sec. 1. Effective September 7, 1994.)

451.1.
  

(a) Notwithstanding any other law, any person who is convicted of a felony violation of Section 451 shall be punished by a three-, four-, or five-year enhancement if one or more of the following circumstances is found to be true:

(1) The defendant has been previously convicted of a felony violation of Section 451 or 452.

(2) A firefighter, peace officer, or other emergency personnel suffered great bodily injury as a result of the offense. The additional term provided by this subdivision shall be imposed whenever applicable, including any instance in which there is a violation of subdivision (a) of Section 451.

(3) The defendant proximately caused great bodily injury to more than one victim in any single violation of Section 451. The additional term provided by this subdivision shall be imposed whenever applicable, including any instance in which there is a violation of subdivision (a) of Section 451.

(4) The defendant proximately caused multiple structures to burn in any single violation of Section 451.

(5) The defendant committed arson as described in subdivision (a), (b), or (c) of Section 451 and the arson was caused by use of a device designed to accelerate the fire or delay ignition.

(b) The additional term specified in subdivision (a) shall not be imposed unless the existence of any fact required under this section shall be alleged in the accusatory pleading and either admitted by the defendant in open court or found to be true by the trier of fact.

(Added by Stats. 1994, Ch. 421, Sec. 2. Effective September 7, 1994.)

451.5.
  

(a) Any person who willfully, maliciously, deliberately, with premeditation, and with intent to cause injury to one or more persons or to cause damage to property under circumstances likely to produce injury to one or more persons or to cause damage to one or more structures or inhabited dwellings, sets fire to, burns, or causes to be burned, or aids, counsels, or procures the burning of any residence, structure, forest land, or property is guilty of aggravated arson if one or more of the following aggravating factors exists:

(1) The defendant has been previously convicted of arson on one or more occasions within the past 10 years.

(2) (A) The fire caused property damage and other losses in excess of seven million dollars ($7,000,000).

(B) In calculating the total amount of property damage and other losses under subparagraph (A), the court shall consider the cost of fire suppression. It is the intent of the Legislature that this paragraph be reviewed within five years to consider the effects of inflation on the dollar amount stated herein.

(3) The fire caused damage to, or the destruction of, five or more inhabited structures.

(b) Any person who is convicted under subdivision (a) shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for 10 years to life.

(c) Any person who is sentenced under subdivision (b) shall not be eligible for release on parole until 10 calendar years have elapsed.

(d) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2019, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that is enacted before January 1, 2019, deletes or extends that date.

(Amended by Stats. 2014, Ch. 481, Sec. 1. Effective September 19, 2014. Repealed as of January 1, 2019, by its own provisions. See later operative version added by Sec. 2 of Stats. 2014, Ch. 481.)

451.5.
  

(a) Any person who willfully, maliciously, deliberately, with premeditation, and with intent to cause injury to one or more persons or to cause damage to property under circumstances likely to produce injury to one or more persons or to cause damage to one or more structures or inhabited dwellings, sets fire to, burns, or causes to be burned, or aids, counsels, or procures the burning of any residence, structure, forest land, or property is guilty of aggravated arson if either of the following aggravating factors exists:

(1) The defendant has been previously convicted of arson on one or more occasions within the past 10 years.

(2) The fire caused damage to, or the destruction of, five or more inhabited structures.

(b) Any person who is convicted under subdivision (a) shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for 10 years to life.

(c) Any person who is sentenced under subdivision (b) shall not be eligible for release on parole until 10 calendar years have elapsed.

(d) This section shall become operative on January 1, 2019.

(Repealed (in Sec. 1) and added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 481, Sec. 2. Effective September 19, 2014. Section operative January 1, 2019, by its own provisions.)

452.
  

A person is guilty of unlawfully causing a fire when he recklessly sets fire to or burns or causes to be burned, any structure, forest land or property.

(a) Unlawfully causing a fire that causes great bodily injury is a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for two, four or six years, or by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than one year, or by a fine, or by both such imprisonment and fine.

(b) Unlawfully causing a fire that causes an inhabited structure or inhabited property to burn is a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for two, three or four years, or by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than one year, or by a fine, or by both such imprisonment and fine.

(c) Unlawfully causing a fire of a structure or forest land is a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for 16 months, two or three years, or by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than six months, or by a fine, or by both such imprisonment and fine.

(d) Unlawfully causing a fire of property is a misdemeanor. For purposes of this paragraph, unlawfully causing a fire of property does not include one burning or causing to be burned his own personal property unless there is injury to another person or to another person’s structure, forest land or property.

(e) In the case of any person convicted of violating this section while confined in a state prison, prison road camp, prison forestry camp, or other prison camp or prison farm, or while confined in a county jail while serving a term of imprisonment for a felony or misdemeanor conviction, any sentence imposed shall be consecutive to the sentence for which the person was then confined.

(Amended by Stats. 1982, Ch. 1133, Sec. 2. Effective September 17, 1982.)

452.1.
  

(a) Notwithstanding any other law, any person who is convicted of a felony violation of Section 452 shall be punished by a one-, two-, or three-year enhancement for each of the following circumstances that is found to be true:

(1) The defendant has been previously convicted of a felony violation of Section 451 or 452.

(2) A firefighter, peace officer, or other emergency personnel suffered great bodily injury as a result of the offense. The additional term provided by this subdivision shall be imposed whenever applicable, including any instance in which there is a violation of subdivision (a) of Section 452.

(3) The defendant proximately caused great bodily injury to more than one victim in any single violation of Section 452. The additional term provided by this subdivision shall be imposed whenever applicable, including any instance in which there is a violation of subdivision (a) of Section 452.

(4) The defendant proximately caused multiple structures to burn in any single violation of Section 452.

(b) The additional term specified in subdivision (a) of Section 452.1 shall not be imposed unless the existence of any fact required under this section shall be alleged in the accusatory pleading and either admitted by the defendant in open court or found to be true by the trier of fact.

(Added by Stats. 1994, Ch. 421, Sec. 4. Effective September 7, 1994.)

453.
  

(a) Every person who possesses, manufactures, or disposes of any flammable, or combustible material or substance, or any incendiary device in an arrangement or preparation, with intent to willfully and maliciously use this material, substance, or device to set fire to or burn any structure, forest land, or property, shall be punished by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170, or in a county jail, not exceeding one year.

(b) For the purposes of this section:

(1) “Disposes of” means to give, give away, loan, offer, offer for sale, sell, or transfer.

(2) “Incendiary device” means a device that is constructed or designed to start an incendiary fire by remote, delayed, or instant means, but no device commercially manufactured primarily for the purpose of illumination shall be deemed to be an incendiary device for the purposes of this section.

(3) “Incendiary fire” means a fire that is deliberately ignited under circumstances in which a person knows that the fire should not be ignited.

(c) Subdivision (a) does not prohibit the authorized use or possession of any material, substance or device described therein by a member of the armed forces of the United States or by firemen, police officers, peace officers, or law enforcement officers authorized by the properly constituted authorities; nor does that subdivision prohibit the use or possession of any material, substance or device described therein when used solely for scientific research or educational purposes, or for disposal of brush under permit as provided for in Section 4494 of the Public Resources Code, or for any other lawful burning. Subdivision (a) does not prohibit the manufacture or disposal of an incendiary device for the parties or purposes described in this subdivision.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 353. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

454.
  

(a) Every person who violates Section 451 or 452 during and within an area of any of the following, when proclaimed by the Governor, shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison, as specified in subdivision (b):

(1) A state of insurrection pursuant to Section 143 of the Military and Veterans Code.

(2) A state of emergency pursuant to Section 8625 of the Government Code.

(b) Any person who is described in subdivision (a) and who violates subdivision (a), (b), or (c) of Section 451 shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for five, seven, or nine years. All other persons who are described in subdivision (a) shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for three, five, or seven years.

(c) Probation shall not be granted to any person who is convicted of violating this section, except in unusual cases where the interest of justice would best be served.

(Amended by Stats. 1997, Ch. 260, Sec. 3. Effective January 1, 1998.)

455.
  

(a) Any person who willfully and maliciously attempts to set fire to or attempts to burn or to aid, counsel or procure the burning of any structure, forest land or property, or who commits any act preliminary thereto, or in furtherance thereof, is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for 16 months, two or three years.

(b) The placing or distributing of any flammable, explosive or combustible material or substance, or any device in or about any structure, forest land or property in an arrangement or preparation with intent to eventually willfully and maliciously set fire to or burn same, or to procure the setting fire to or burning of the same shall, for the purposes of this act constitute an attempt to burn such structure, forest land or property.

(Amended (as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15) by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 17. Effective June 30, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, pursuant to Secs. 68 and 69 of Ch. 39.)

456.
  

(a) Upon conviction for any felony violation of this chapter, in addition to the penalty prescribed, the court may impose a fine not to exceed fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) unless a greater amount is provided by law.

(b) When any person is convicted of a violation of any provision of this chapter and the reason he committed the violation was for pecuniary gain, in addition to the penalty prescribed and instead of the fine provided in subdivision (a), the court may impose a fine of twice the anticipated or actual gross gain.

(Amended by Stats. 1979, Ch. 145.)

457.
  

Upon conviction of any person for a violation of any provision of this chapter, the court may order that such person, for the purpose of sentencing, submit to a psychiatric or psychological examination.

(Added by renumbering Section 455 by Stats. 1979, Ch. 145.)

457.1.
  

(a) As used in this section, “arson” means a violation of Section 451, 451.5, or 453, and attempted arson, which includes, but is not limited to, a violation of Section 455.

(b) (1) Every person described in paragraph (2), (3), and (4), for the periods specified therein, shall, while residing in, or if the person has no residence, while located in California, be required to, within 14 days of coming into, or changing the person’s residence or location within any city, county, city and county, or campus wherein the person temporarily resides, or if the person has no residence, is located:

(A) Register with the chief of police of the city where the person is residing, or if the person has no residence, where the person is located.

(B) Register with the sheriff of the county where the person is residing, or if the person has no residence, where the person is located in an unincorporated area or city that has no police department.

(C) In addition to (A) or (B) above, register with the chief of police of a campus of the University of California, the California State University, or community college where the person is residing, or if the person has no residence, where the person is located upon the campus or any of its facilities.

(2) Any person who, on or after November 30, 1994, is convicted in any court in this state of arson or attempted arson shall be required to register, in accordance with the provisions of this section, for the rest of his or her life.

(3) Any person who, having committed the offense of arson or attempted arson, and after having been adjudicated a ward of the juvenile court on or after January 1, 1993, is discharged or paroled from the Department of the Youth Authority shall be required to register, in accordance with the provisions of this section, until that person attains the age of 25 years, or until the person has his or her records sealed pursuant to Section 781 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, whichever comes first.

(4) Any person convicted of the offense of arson or attempted arson on or after January 1, 1985, through November 29, 1994, inclusive, in any court of this state, shall be required to register, in accordance with the provisions of this section, for a period of five years commencing, in the case where the person was confined for the offense, from the date of their release from confinement, or in the case where the person was not confined for the offense, from the date of sentencing or discharge, if that person was ordered by the court at the time that person was sentenced to register as an arson offender. The law enforcement agencies shall make registration information available to the chief fire official of a legally organized fire department or fire protection district having local jurisdiction where the person resides.

(c) Any person required to register pursuant to this section who is discharged or paroled from a jail, prison, school, road camp, or other penal institution, or from the Department of the Youth Authority where he or she was confined because of the commission or attempted commission of arson, shall, prior to the discharge, parole, or release, be informed of his or her duty to register under this section by the official in charge of the place of confinement. The official shall require the person to read and sign the form as may be required by the Department of Justice, stating that the duty of the person to register under this section has been explained to him or her. The official in charge of the place of confinement shall obtain the address where the person expects to reside upon his or her discharge, parole, or release and shall report the address to the Department of Justice. The official in charge of the place of confinement shall give one copy of the form to the person, and shall, not later than 45 days prior to the scheduled release of the person, send one copy to the appropriate law enforcement agency having local jurisdiction where the person expects to reside upon his or her discharge, parole, or release; one copy to the prosecuting agency that prosecuted the person; one copy to the chief fire official of a legally organized fire department or fire protection district having local jurisdiction where the person expects to reside upon his or her discharge, parole, or release; and one copy to the Department of Justice. The official in charge of the place of confinement shall retain one copy. All forms shall be transmitted in time so as to be received by the local law enforcement agency and prosecuting agency 30 days prior to the discharge, parole, or release of the person.

(d) All records relating specifically to the registration in the custody of the Department of Justice, law enforcement agencies, and other agencies or public officials shall be destroyed when the person required to register under this subdivision for offenses adjudicated by a juvenile court attains the age of 25 years or has his or her records sealed under the procedures set forth in Section 781 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, whichever event occurs first. This subdivision shall not be construed to require the destruction of other criminal offender or juvenile records relating to the case that are maintained by the Department of Justice, law enforcement agencies, the juvenile court, or other agencies and public officials unless ordered by the court under Section 781 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.

(e) Any person who is required to register pursuant to this section who is released on probation or discharged upon payment of a fine shall, prior to the release or discharge, be informed of his or her duty to register under this section by the probation department of the county in which he or she has been convicted, and the probation officer shall require the person to read and sign the form as may be required by the Department of Justice, stating that the duty of the person to register under this section has been explained to him or her. The probation officer shall obtain the address where the person expects to reside upon his or her release or discharge and shall report within three days the address to the Department of Justice. The probation officer shall give one copy of the form to the person, and shall send one copy to the appropriate law enforcement agency having local jurisdiction where the person expects to reside upon his or her discharge or release, one copy to the prosecuting agency that prosecuted the person, one copy to the chief fire official of a legally organized fire department or fire protection district having local jurisdiction where the person expects to reside upon his or her discharge or release, and one copy to the Department of Justice. The probation officer shall also retain one copy.

(f) The registration shall consist of (1) a statement in writing signed by the person, giving the information as may be required by the Department of Justice, and (2) the fingerprints and photograph of the person. Within three days thereafter, the registering law enforcement agency shall electronically forward the statement, fingerprints, and photograph to the Department of Justice.

(g) If any person required to register by this section changes his or her residence address, he or she shall inform, in writing within 10 days, the law enforcement agency with whom he or she last registered of his or her new address. The law enforcement agency shall, within three days after receipt of the information, electronically forward it to the Department of Justice. The Department of Justice shall forward appropriate registration data to the law enforcement agency having local jurisdiction of the new place of residence.

(h) Any person required to register under this section who violates any of the provisions thereof is guilty of a misdemeanor. Any person who has been convicted of arson or attempted arson and who is required to register under this section who willfully violates any of the provisions thereof is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be sentenced to serve a term of not less than 90 days nor more than one year in a county jail. In no event does the court have the power to absolve a person who willfully violates this section from the obligation of spending at least 90 days of confinement in a county jail and of completing probation of at least one year.

(i) Whenever any person is released on parole or probation and is required to register under this section but fails to do so within the time prescribed, the Board of Prison Terms, the Department of the Youth Authority, or the court, as the case may be, shall order the parole or probation of that person revoked.

(j) The statements, photographs, and fingerprints required by this section shall not be open to inspection by the public or by any person other than a regularly employed peace officer or other law enforcement officer.

(k) In any case in which a person who would be required to register pursuant to this section is to be temporarily sent outside the institution where he or she is confined on any assignment within a city or county, including, but not limited to, firefighting or disaster control, the local law enforcement agency having jurisdiction over the place or places where that assignment shall occur shall be notified within a reasonable time prior to removal from the institution. This subdivision shall not apply to any person temporarily released under guard from the institution where he or she is confined.

(l) Nothing in this section shall be construed to conflict with Section 1203.4 concerning termination of probation and release from penalties and disabilities of probation.

A person required to register under this section may initiate a proceeding under Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 4852.01) of Title 6 of Part 3 and, upon obtaining a certificate of rehabilitation, shall be relieved of any further duty to register under this section. This certificate shall not relieve the petitioner of the duty to register under this section for any offense subject to this section of which he or she is convicted in the future.

Any person who is required to register under this section due to a misdemeanor conviction shall be relieved of the requirement to register if that person is granted relief pursuant to Section 1203.4.

(Amended by Stats. 1999, Ch. 518, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2000.)

PENPenal Code - PEN