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UER Forum > Rookie Forum > What legal trouble can you get in while exploring (Viewed 4904 times)
kevinhny12 


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What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< on 3/29/2016 6:43 AM >
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I was wondering what would happen if you were in an abandoned building (with NO no trespassing signs) and if you didn't break in (the door was wide open) if the police found you what would happen?




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Steed 


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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 1 on 3/29/2016 6:46 AM >
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It's impossible to predict. They could lock you up and throw away the key for going somewhere totally innocuous, or just kindly show you the way out in somewhere else you'd think more sensitive. It differs from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but also based on how responders react.




EsseXploreR 


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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 2 on 3/29/2016 9:23 AM >
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Posted by kevinhny12
I was wondering what would happen if you were in an abandoned building (with NO no trespassing signs) and if you didn't break in (the door was wide open) if the police found you what would happen?


It's less about what the officer is going to do and more about the prosecutor. The police officer can issue you a ticket anyway, just to make you have to go to court. However, with the circumstances you described, that's not actually even trespassing in a handful of states. Including mine.



[last edit 3/29/2016 11:59 AM by EsseXploreR - edited 2 times]

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Peptic Ulcer 


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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 3 on 3/29/2016 12:36 PM >
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This question is impossible to answer - every situation is different, laws are different and every cop is different. It also depends on how YOU behave. The cops are the first line defense here. If you try and hide, don't comply with commands, or run away and get caught, there are a whole host of charges that can be brought, many of which are felonies and the least of which is trespassing.

Many here have posted stories about hiding, running etc and it's worked for them. I've always been up front, compliant and cooperative and never been arrested. As far as the law is concerned, here is a link that may help you understand your local laws:

http://www.uer.ca/...urrpage=1&pp#post0

In the scenario you posted above, in TEXAS (assuming there were no fences and no purple paint), they legally don't have a leg to stand on. That being said, mouthing off to them about "your rights" and coming off like an asshole lawyer isn't going to help your cause. Remember, these guys control what goes into the report and that smart mouth of yours and the pocket knife in your bag may turn into resisting arrest and carrying a concealed weapon...




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blackhawk 

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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 4 on 3/29/2016 3:21 PM >
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Posted by kevinhny12
I was wondering what would happen if you were in an abandoned building (with NO no trespassing signs) and if you didn't break in (the door was wide open) if the police found you what would happen?


Know the applicable laws for your state. Knowing them and being assertive with police when needed can save you from being charged sometimes.
Many you will be trespassing by the letter of the law however on private property if the owner doesn't care, enforcement maybe nonexistent.
It depends on the cop(s) that stop you and how you handle yourself.

Most wide open places not posted or fenced/gated are just that, wide open. Cops have stop to question me in places like that, mostly out of curiosity or concerns of safety. Almost all were polite and some I talked with a bit about the site before they left.

Always try to put yourself in the cops shoes. Keep your hands in the open, never in your pockets. Wait from them to ask for ID. Don't act nervous, and make eye contact with them; don't stare at the ground or their chest like a guilty dumbass. They got better things to do most times than screw with someone who's straight up with them and who's only crime is curiosity.




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Badlattitudes 


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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 5 on 3/29/2016 4:17 PM >
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Here you would be questioned, and then how you respond/that particular police officer would either 1. Tell you to leave and not return (This has been the experience of the local explorers around here that I know), 2. Give you a ticket with a court date where you will get a fine, or 3. Get arrested and spend a day/night/weekend in jail until your court then you will get a fine and a possible violation or misdemeanor on your record. In my state being on property that is not your own, and not public is always trespassing even if it's not posted.

I always go into every situation preparing to run into police/scary people/etc. I am respectful and polite. I always play a little dumb and apologetic "Oh, Oops I'm sorry, I was taking pictures." I dress casual and I don't bring anything suspicious with me. I think a lot of it is how you present yourself and the judgement they will make. Worst case scenario you'll get a breaking and entering misdemeanor. Which would be really bad if you're trying to rent houses. I've never heard of anyone here getting anything more than a night in jail and a fine though, and that was because they had been told to leave prior, and it was a well known spot with like 30 no trespassing signs.





anatonic 


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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 6 on 3/29/2016 4:17 PM >
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Posted by blackhawk
Always try to put yourself in the cops shoes. Keep your hands in the open, never in your pockets. Wait from them to ask for ID. Don't act nervous, and make eye contact with them; don't stare at the ground or their chest like a guilty dumbass. They got better things to do most times than screw with someone who's straight up with them and who's only crime is curiosity.


This is all great advice, another key step if its clear you've been spotted and are going to have to talk yourself out of a situation is to immediately diffuse the situation and set the mood, maintain having some sense of the upper hand. Easiest way to do this is a simple wave, or by approaching them first with a friendly attitude. Don't be a dick and most of the time they won't be either, and if you get yelled at take it - don't argue back.




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blackhawk 

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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 7 on 3/29/2016 6:58 PM >
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Posted by anatonic


This is all great advice, another key step if its clear you've been spotted and are going to have to talk yourself out of a situation is to immediately diffuse the situation and set the mood, maintain having some sense of the upper hand. Easiest way to do this is a simple wave, or by approaching them first with a friendly attitude. Don't be a dick and most of the time they won't be either, and if you get yelled at take it - don't argue back.


The assertive upper hand thing used to work more years ago when formal training wasn't the norm. Even then it was a crap shoot. I don't recommend especially if your shit is weak. Understanding their training and protocols helps.

I think you really have to feel them out and let them do the talking. The first way they gauge you is by your level of compliance to their commands. Never answer questions they didn't ask or talk nervous dribble. Remain calm, compose yourself. Generally it's better to let them lead. They are trained to be assertive and should be. Some deliberately will play dumb to see what you will show them; there are some very clever ones out there.

Be very careful approaching a cop in their car; stay in plain sight and keep your hands visible. Many times it's best to let them to approach you. Their shit is weak when seated in their car and they know it. Making a cop nervous never helps. If you know the cop is after you and you're in your car, stay in your car, hands on the wheel. Do not go looking for shit in the car! Wait for them to ask and then tell them what you are going to do before you do it. The more compliant you are by following -their- protocols the better the outcome. Cops generally don't want to hassle a good guy for minor bs.

Never argue, and allow them to take charge. They're trained to do that, and resistance even verbal can escalate the encounter. They will then have a tendency not to listen. Remember compliance goes a long way with cops and can make the difference between arrest or a warning, or a ticket instead of a night in jail. If you're are patient they will ask you what you're doing.

Yeah you're right, never yell or curse at a cop even if they're are yelling or cursing at you. It happens. Let them cool off by not adding to the fire. It's just business, don't take it personally




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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 8 on 3/30/2016 3:53 AM >
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Posted by blackhawk
Remember compliance goes a long way with cops and can make the difference between arrest or a warning, or a ticket instead of a night in jail.

This is probably the most solid advice on here- the police love being in control, and if you can indulge that for a few minutes you most likely won't get on their bad side




"See you guys, you never listen to me. I said there was gonna be trouble but you didn't listen to me. You guys are crazy. You know, you guys are self destructive. There's a funny farm and it has your names written all over it. But I'm gettin' out of here. I'm... I smell ice cream!"
VAD 


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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 9 on 3/30/2016 7:20 AM >
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You'll generally get more applicable answers to legal questions if you ask in regional forums.




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blackhawk 

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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 10 on 3/30/2016 2:58 PM >
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Posted by LuminousAphid

This is probably the most solid advice on here- the police love being in control, and if you can indulge that for a few minutes you most likely won't get on their bad side


Thanks. It's really not an ego thing. It's survival training for cops. When they don't establish a base line and tone things can turn ugly fast with bad guys. Most LEOs top priority is going home alive and in one piece.
They are gauging you. Don't think of it as indulgence or take it personally. Having an attitude clouds your judgement and ability to resolve the situation amicably. Just business.
Being respectful, compliant, and truthful indicates you aren't going to be a problem to deal with and that words or a minimum level of enforcement can resolve it.


I don't mind a well trained cop because they are easier to deal with generally as long as you stay in the lines and don't force them to arrest you. Some will go out of their way to help you. More than once I had state police drive for gas (he even drove me to Ace to buy the jug), and one who charge a battery for me overnight. I have felt sorry for some that didn't have good training or failed to use it; with the wrong perp it can get them killed.

And never call a LEO, "boss". It indicates you've been in prison.




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ROMNEY 


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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 11 on 4/6/2016 1:30 PM >
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I once (in many years of exploring) got caught by police and charged with an EWOP ("Entering Without Permission"). Paid a couple hundred bucks and misdemeanor wiped off my record after 90 days.

A++, would do again.

No regrets.

Unless you B&E and/or damage property, most likely charges include "Trespassing" or similar (misdemeanors).




mookster 


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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 12 on 4/6/2016 5:51 PM >
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Posted by blackhawk


Be very careful approaching a cop in their car; stay in plain sight and keep your hands visible. Many times it's best to let them to approach you. Their shit is weak when seated in their car and they know it. Making a cop nervous never helps. If you know the cop is after you and you're in your car, stay in your car, hands on the wheel. Do not go looking for shit in the car! Wait for them to ask and then tell them what you are going to do before you do it. The more compliant you are by following -their- protocols the better the outcome. Cops generally don't want to hassle a good guy for minor bs.

Never argue, and allow them to take charge. They're trained to do that, and resistance even verbal can escalate the encounter. They will then have a tendency not to listen. Remember compliance goes a long way with cops and can make the difference between arrest or a warning, or a ticket instead of a night in jail. If you're are patient they will ask you what you're doing.



Very solid advice.

When we were pulled by a cop just after leaving some craphole factory we knew we were going to get stopped as soon as we got into the car as he was doing a u-turn right in front of where we had parked. We all played it cool, allowed him to lead the conversation and despite his repeated attempts to pin something on us (he hadn't actually seen us leave the building), eventually he let us off with a warning.

Although part of me thinks it might have been more to do with how close he was to the end of his shift (he said as much that he was almost clocking off work), had it been the middle of the afternoon it may have had a very different outcome for us.



[last edit 4/6/2016 5:53 PM by mookster - edited 1 times]

DJ Craig 

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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 13 on 4/14/2016 5:38 AM >
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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 14 on 10/11/2018 3:03 AM >
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Having gone through a lengthy and money consuming legal case, where a simple misdemeanor trespass got upgraded to three felonies because a landowner can trump up charges:

1. Prepare at least $2,000 in readily accessible cash for a lawyer that is closer to the physical court location. No lawyer does payment plans.

2. Pleading not guilty will add $4,000+ in lawyer fees. Pleading no contest waives those fees, and could result in reduced charges or penalties.

3. Prepare at least $1,000 to $2,000 in court costs and restitution. And community service. And hope that there is diversion/probation.




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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 15 on 10/11/2018 5:37 AM >
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Posted by seicer
Having gone through a lengthy and money consuming legal case, where a simple misdemeanor trespass got upgraded to three felonies because a landowner can trump up charges:

1. Prepare at least $2,000 in readily accessible cash for a lawyer that is closer to the physical court location. No lawyer does payment plans.

2. Pleading not guilty will add $4,000+ in lawyer fees. Pleading no contest waives those fees, and could result in reduced charges or penalties.

3. Prepare at least $1,000 to $2,000 in court costs and restitution. And community service. And hope that there is diversion/probation.


That's... a lot of money. What charges did the landowner trump up, if I may ask?




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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 16 on 10/11/2018 4:17 PM >
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In the digital age nothing is ever completely expunged.
The DOD and FBI will be able to see that incident forever.
Getting confrontational while trespassing usually has a poor outcome especially if it's the owner...




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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 17 on 10/11/2018 6:18 PM >
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Getting confrontational while trespassing usually has a poor outcome especially if it's the owner...


That's it right there. Confrontation with anyone in a position of authority (regardless of the magnitude of said authority) will almost always do you more harm than good. Yes sir, no Ma'am is always the best course of action, even if... maybe even especially, if they are being dicks.





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Re: What legal trouble can you get in while exploring
< Reply # 18 on 10/11/2018 8:00 PM >
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Always best to be as polite as possible whenever busted at a location.




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