14-398.  Theft or destruction of property of public libraries, museums, etc.

Any person who shall steal or unlawfully take or detain, or willfully or maliciously or wantonly write upon, cut, tear, deface, disfigure, soil, obliterate, break or destroy, or who shall sell or buy or receive, knowing the same to have been stolen, any book, document, newspaper, periodical, map, chart, picture, portrait, engraving, statue, coin, medal, apparatus, specimen, or other work of literature or object of art or curiosity deposited in a public library, gallery, museum, collection, fair or exhibition, or in any department or office of State or local government, or in a library, gallery, museum, collection, or exhibition, belonging to any incorporated college or university, or any incorporated institution devoted to educational, scientific, literary, artistic, historical or charitable purposes, shall, if the value of the property stolen, detained, sold, bought or received knowing same to have been stolen, or if the damage done by writing upon, cutting, tearing, defacing, disfiguring, soiling, obliterating, breaking or destroying any such property, shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50.00), be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.  If the value of the property stolen, detained, sold or received knowing same to have been stolen, or the amount of damage done in any of the ways or manners hereinabove set out, shall exceed the sum of fifty dollars ($50.00), the person committing same shall be punished as a Class H felon. (1935, c. 300; 1943, c. 543; 1979, c. 760, s. 5; 1979, 2nd Sess., c. 1316, s. 47; 1981, c. 63, s. 1, c. 179, s. 14; 1993, c. 539, s. 265; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c).)