GAINESVILLE, FL (December 5, 2019) – According to an online news report at wcjb.com, the police at the University of Florida made a number of arrests and ejected certain people from a popular Gator football game over this past weekend.
A total of fifteen individuals were kicked out of the stadium and placed under arrest during a UF vs. FSU football game. One person had been requested to leave following a reported assault and battery, nine individuals were ejected due to disorderly conduct and intoxication, one individual was arrested for trespassing, and another for possessing narcotics. Five of the 15 individuals who were placed under arrests were University of Florida students.
Florida Law of Trespass in Structure
Under Florida Statutes Section 810.08, trespass in structure occurs when an individual, “without being authorized, licensed, or invited, willfully enters or remains in any structure or conveyance, or, having been authorized, licensed, or invited, is warned by the owner or lessee of the premises, or by a person authorized by the owner or lessee, to depart and refuses to do so.” This crime also applies where an individual, who was initially permitted to enter the premises, fails to do so after being asked to leave.
To prove that this offense occurred, a prosecutor must demonstrate that the following three elements have been satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt:
- The defendant willfully entered or remained in any structure or conveyance, or, having been authorized, licensed, or invited, is warned by the owner or lessee of the premises, or by a person authorized by the owner or lessee, to depart and refused to do so;
- The person alleging the trespass was in lawful possession of the structure; and
- The entering in or remaining in the structure by the defendant was without the express or implied person of the person who is alleging the trespass (or his or her agent).
In order to constitute a crime, the trespass must have been conducted willfully. This means that the entering or remaining must be done intentionally, purposefully, and knowingly. Rozier v. State, 402 So. 2d 539, 542-43 (Fla. 5th DCA 1981). However, to be convicted of trespass, the defendant does not actually have to intend to trespass. Simply willfully entering or remaining on a certain property without the permission of a person authorized to grant, deny, or withdraw such permission suffices.
The crime of trespass in a structure is a second-degree misdemeanor. If convicted, a person can face up to 60 days in jail, a fine of up to $500, and six months of probation.