Virginia has three particular mob crimes where individuals deemed to be in a “mob” are charged for crimes by others in the mob.
What is a Mob in Virginia?
A mob is:
Any collection of people, assembled for the purpose and with the intention of committing an assault or a battery upon any person or an act of violence … without authority of lawVa. Code § 18.2-38
Malicious Wounding by Mob is a Class 3 Felony. This is punished by 5-20 years in prison, and a fine of up to $100,000.
Assault and Battery by Mob is a Class 1 Misdemeanor. This is punishable by up to one year in Jail and/or up to a $2,500 fine.
This code section creates a “mob” crime for any other act of violence. Penalties for these charges vary based on the underlying violent crime.
Defending a Mob Crime
If you are charged with any crime “by Mob” it does not necessarily mean that you are the person who committed the particular violent act. The Commonwealth must prove that you were part of the mob. This means that you, and others, came together with the intention or purpose of committing a violent act. That does not mean that your only purpose was to commit a violent act. And it does not mean that if you started out with one motive, and then the intention changed, that you were not part of a mob. The intent can be be shown by the fact that others were committing violent acts, and you remain, or assisted or otherwise encouraged them. But the Commonwealth does have to prove this intent.
The commonwealth also have to prove the elements of the underlying crime, which is particularly important if you are charged with a felony offense that has specific elements.
Hire a Lawyer For Your Mob Crime Charge in Virginia
Mob offenses are complex. They involve an additional layer to the offense that does not apply to other charges. Contact our Virginia Criminal Defense Attorneys to learn how we can help you with your mob charge in courts across Northern Virginia.