Arson

Sec. 28.02.  ARSON.  
A person commits an offense if the person starts a fire (regardless of whether the fire continues after ignition), or causes an explosion with intent to destroy or damage any vegetation, fence, or structure on open-space land  or any building, habitation, or vehicle (knowing that: it is within the limits of an incorporated city or town;  knowing that it is insured against damage or destruction; knowing that it is subject to a mortgage or other security interest; knowing that it is located on property belonging to another; knowing that it has located within it property belonging to another;  or when the person is reckless about whether the burning or explosion will endanger the life of some individual or the safety of the property of another.

Further, a person commits an offense if the person recklessly starts a fire or causes an explosion while manufacturing or attempting to manufacture a controlled substance and the fire or explosion damages any building, habitation, or vehicle.

A person commits an offense if the person intentionally starts a fire or causes an explosion and in so doing: recklessly damages or destroys a building belonging to another; or recklessly causes another person to suffer bodily injury or death.

Exceptions or Defenses:
It is an exception to this section that the fire or explosion was a part of the controlled burning of open-space land.
It is a defense to prosecution under this section that prior to starting the fire or causing the explosion, the actor obtained a permit or other written authorization granted in accordance with a city ordinance, if any, regulating fires and explosions.

Range of Punishment:
An Arson offense can range between a State Jail Felony to a 1st Degree Felony.
If it is determined that bodily injury or death was suffered as a result of the offense or the property intended to be damaged or destroyed was a habitation or a place of assembly or worship, then the offense can much more severe.

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