Attorney DeBruin represents clients from across lower Michigan.

Attorney DeBruin represents clients from across lower michigan.

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When is wearing a mask considered a crime?

On Behalf of | Oct 24, 2023 | Criminal Defense, Theft Crimes

Halloween may be popular with kids, but they’re not the only ones who could get into costume for fun. Adults can dress for the occasion too, whether going trick-or-treating with their children or taking part in a costume party.

However, there are certain circumstances where wearing a mask is a criminal offense in Michigan. When is wearing a mask a crime, and what are the punishments?

Masks while committing another crime is a separate offense

Per Michigan law, a person who intentionally conceals their identity with a mask or similar face-covering device to commit another criminal offense violates state rules. The offense is a misdemeanor that can go on a person’s criminal record.

The penalties for wearing a mask while committing another offense

Anyone convicted of intentionally concealing their face while in the middle of another criminal offense faces up to 93 days of jail time, or up to $500 in fines, or both.

These penalties can be combined with the punishments for the other criminal offenses a person was additionally convicted of, such as theft or robbery. Other possible crimes where wearing a mask is potentially involved include breaking and entering, trespassing and rioting.

It’s not unusual for adults to wear masks on Halloween, but wearing a concealing disguise while committing an offense leads to added charges. The offense may be a misdemeanor, but it’s still a criminal charge, which leads to fines, jail time and a criminal record. Anyone facing the charge shouldn’t underestimate the additional penalties it carries.