Is pulling a fire alarm a crime?

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Obviously, we don’t need to tell you that if there is a fire raging, considering pulling a fire alarm a crime would be absurd.  But, as we know, students love to pull pranks and pulling fire alarms is one of their favorites.

Pulling a fire alarm can be a crime.  In California,  this is defined by Penal Code Section 148.4, see below:

148.4. (a) Any person who does any of the following is guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail, not exceeding one year, or by a fine, not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment:
(1) Willfully and maliciously tampers with, molests, injures, or
breaks any fire protection equipment, fire protection installation, fire alarm apparatus, wire, or signal.
(2) Willfully and maliciously sends, gives, transmits, or sounds
any false alarm of fire, by means of any fire alarm system or signal or by any other means or methods.
(b) Any person who willfully and maliciously sends, gives,
transmits, or sounds any false alarm of fire, by means of any fire alarm system or signal, or by any other means or methods, is guilty of a felony and upon conviction is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison or by a fine of not less than five hundred dollars ($500) nor more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment, if any person sustains as a result thereof, any of the following:
(1) Great bodily injury.
(2) Death.

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