Under Illinois law, arson occurs when a person uses fire or explosives to intentionally damage another person’s property. Given the inherent danger of arson — especially fire’s ability to spread quickly — there are strict penalties against arson in Illinois. In certain severe situations, using fire or explosives can result in criminal charges for aggravated arson.
Illinois Laws and Penalties for Arson
The Illinois laws and penalties for arson appear under 720 ILCS 5/20-1. There are essentially three different types of arson crimes in Illinois — arson, residential arson and place of worship arson.
First, a person commits the standard version of arson if he or she knowingly uses fire or explosive to:
Damage at least $150 of another person’s property without consent; or
Defraud an insurer by damaging at least $150 of another person’s property.
Arson is a Class 2 felony in Illinois. The penalty structure for [...]