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Being Where You Should Not Be: Trespassing in Illinois

 Posted on March 09, 2015 in Criminal Defense

Illinois criminal defense attorney, Illinois defense lawyer, safe school zone,Trespassing, in a very basic sense, is being where you are not supposed to be. People often think of it as being on another person’s land without permission. But Illinois’ trespassing statutes actually prohibit much more than that. It is important to understand what constitutes trespassing because ignorance of the law is not a defense, and if you wind up trespassing you may find yourself in need of a criminal defense lawyer.

Criminal Trespass to Vehicles

Illinois statute prohibits what it calls “trespass to vehicles.” A person commits this crime when he or she knowingly enters or operates a vehicle, aircraft, watercraft, or snowmobile without authority. This crime is a Class A misdemeanor.

Use of Electronic Tracking Devices

An electronic tracking device, for purposes of the trespassing statutes, is a device you attach to a vehicle that reveals the vehicle’s location through the transmission of electronic signals. One example would be the use of a GPS tracker on a car. Generally speaking, you are not allowed to use one of these on someone else’s vehicle without their consent, and doing so would be a Class A misdemeanor. There are exceptions for law enforcement, business owners who are tracking their employees’ use of a company car, state vehicles, and GPS systems that come installed as a feature on cars.

Criminal Trespass to Real Property

This is the action people normally think of when they think of trespassing. “Real property” means land or buildings. A person commits this offense when he or she does one of the following:

  • Knowingly enters or remains in a building without authority;
  • Enters another person’s land after he or she has been warned by the owner or occupant that he or she is not allowed to do so;
  • Remains on someone else’s land after that person tells him or her to leave;
  • Presents false documents to convince a land owner or occupant to let him or her stay on the land;
  • Removes certain real estate notices; or
  • Enters certain agricultural fields or buildings after being told he or she may not, or staying on such property after being told to leave.

Criminal Trespass to a Safe School Zone

A person commits this crime when he or she enters or remains in a safe school zone without lawful business and when as a student or school employee who has been suspended/expelled/dismissed for disrupting the operation of the school and as a condition of of the suspension/expulsion/dismissal he or she is denied access to the school. There are also more complicated ways in which one can violate this law that would, at a minimum, require entrance into a safe school zone after being served with a notice that the notice recipient is not allowed to be there.

Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley

If you are charged with trespassing or any other crime, you will need the help of an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney. Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley. We will fight for you. Our phone number is (847)394-3200.

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