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Trespassing Defense Attorneys in Naples, Florida 

Get Aggressive Representation for Trespassing Charges 

By Florida Law, entering and/or remaining on another person’s property when you do not have permission to do so is a criminal offense, labeled as a trespass crime (or simply trespassing). As an example of a common scenario, a person may re-enter a nightclub, restaurant, or bar when he/she has been asked to leave the premises. While an event of this nature might fall under the general category of “misdemeanor,” legal officials may increase the crime to a felony, depending on the severity of the incident in question. On that note, culprits can face up to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine, but, on the more severe scale, punishment will include a 5-year prison sentence and a $5,000 fine.  

Here at Musca Law, we offer aggressive representation for trespassing charges and are ready to help you get the justice you deserve in these tricky situations. For more information, call (239) 793-5297 to speak to a representative at our office in Naples, Florida. 

What You Need to Know about Trespassing Crimes

According to the Legal Information Institute at Cornell University, trespassing occurs when people enter and/or remain in buildings or on property that they have not been permitted to enter. Furthermore, Federal Code Chapter 11.411 dictates that most trespassing offenses (under this category) are regarded as petty misdemeanors, while trespassing at night is generally considered a simple misdemeanor. 

People will face charges for trespassing if they enter and stay inside a building, by which a notice of trespass has been authorized via: 

  • Direct or indirect communication with the culprit
  • Legal postings
  • Postings set up by the owner/proprietor of the property
  • Fences/enclosures set up to keep out trespassers 

Understanding Terms Associated with Trespassing Crimes 

So you can fully understand the different types of property that may be involved in trespassing crimes in Florida, here is a closer look at some terms provided by Florida Statute Title XLVI Chapter 810.011

  • Fenced land: land contained via fence or other types of enclosures (walls, posts, etc.) 
  • Structure: any type of building (permanent/temporary) covered by a roof (includes remnants of a former building site)
  • Posted land: land containing signs that read “no trespassing” (which can be no further than 500 feet apart and must have 2-inch-high letters) or letters (painted on trees or other materials) that also advertise this message

Charges for Trespassing in Buildings and Other Structures 

Florida Statute Title XLVI Chapter 810.08 (1) dictates that any person who makes an attempt to enter a building or structure without having previously received permission to do so from the land owner (or has been warned not to enter the premises by the owner) will be charged with a trespass crime: 

  • Any person who trespasses on private property will faces charges of a 2nd-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a 60-day prison sentence and a $500 fine, as dictated in Chapter 810.08 (2). 
  • If a person was occupying the building/structure at the time of the crime, the culprit will be charged with a 1st-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a 1-year prison sentence and a fine of $1,000. 
  • Any person who has armed himself/herself with a weapon while trespassing on this property will be charged with a 3rd-degree felony, punishable by a 5-year prison sentence and a $5,000 fine. (Any property owners who believe this person poses a significant threat and has committed the crime in question may take this person into custody until police officers arrive at the scene.) 

Charges for Trespassing on Property That Is Not Recognized as a Building 

Florida Statute Title XLVI Chapter 810.09 (1, a-b) dictates that any person who wanders onto property that is not a building (or another type of structure) not marked with a “no trespassing” sign and has not received permission to do so will be charged with a trespass crime. Ultimately, culprits accused of this crime can potentially be punished in one of the following ways: 

  • Any person who commits a trespassing crime on protected property will face charges of a 1st-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a 1-year prison sentence and a $1,000 fine. 
  • If (during the time the crime took place) the culprit refuses to leave after receiving a warning from the owner and/or opens doors (ultimately putting crops, animals, or other types of property at risk of exposure to litter or pollution), he/she will face charges of a 1st-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a 1-year prison sentence and a $1,000 fine. 
  • If the culprit wields a weapon during the time of the crime, he/she will be charged with a 3rd-degree felony, punishable by a 5-year prison sentence and a $5,000 fine. Culprits will also face felony charges if the property was marked with a “no trespassing” sign and/or is fenced (or partitioned in a different manner). 

Charges for Trespassing on School Property 

As dictated by Florida Statute Title XLVI Chapter 810.097 (1, a-b), any person who is not associated with a school campus (or related organization) or has not been licensed to be present on this property for any purposes will face charges of a 2nd-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a 60-day prison sentence and a fine of $500. These same charges apply to students who have recently been expelled and attempts to trespass on school grounds. 

Similarly, Chapter 810.097 (2) dictates that any person who has received a warning to stay away from school premises (by the principal or an associate) and willingly ignores this warning (by wandering onto the school grounds) will face charges of a 1st-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a 1-year prison sentence and a $1,000 fine. 

Furthermore, as stated in Chapter 810.097 (3), Florida State Law permits chief administrative officers to take a culprit into custody (if he/she believes the offender has trespassed on school grounds in defiance of a warning) and detain this individual until authorities arrive at the scene. 

Under these circumstances, a school may refer to a facility that includes: 

  • Kindergarten schools
  • Elementary schools
  • Middle schools
  • Junior high schools
  • Any form of secondary school

Some Important Facts about Trespassing and Burglary 

As highlighted in Chapter 810 of the Florida Statutes, legal officials also consider some trespass crimes to be act of burglary. FS Title XLVI Chapter 810.02 (1b), burglary occurs when a person: 

  • Enters (or attempts to enter) a building or wanders onto land (posted with a warning) with the full intention to commit a crime on these premises (unless this same property is open for public attendance or closed). 
  • Wanders onto property and has not previously received permission to do so from by the owner or administrator of this property. 

Any person who attempts to commit an act of burglary on another person’s property will be punished on one of the following ways, depending on the severity of this offense: 

  • Chapter 810.01 (2a-c): If the culprit has injured another person, is armed with a weapon, and enters the structure without permission, this person will face charges of a 1st-degree felony, punishable by a 30-year prison sentence and a $10,000 to $15,000 fine. 
  • Chapter 810.01(3): If the culprit has not attempted to inflict physical injuries on victims in the process of illegally entering premises and is not armed with a weapon, he/she will face charges of a 2nd-degree felony, punishable by a 15-year prison sentence and a $10,000 fine. 
  • Chapter 810.01(4): If the culprit has not assaulted victims, has not been armed with a weapon, or has left the premises, he/she will face charges of a 3rd-degree felony, punishable by a 5-year prison sentence and a $5,000 fine. 

Some Facts about Trespassing and Voyeurism 

As dictated by Florida Statute Title XLVI Chapter 810.14 (1, a-b), voyeurism is also recognized as a variety of a trespassing crime. As indicated in this code, voyeurism occurs when a person intentionally and maliciously observes a victim (including the intimate portions of this victim’s body) when this victim should be legally defended by the boundaries of his/her private property. 

If a culprit has committed the crime of voyeurism, he/she will face one of the following charges, depending on the severity of the crime: 

  • First-time offenders will face charges of a 1st-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a 1-year prison sentence and a $1,000 fine. 
  • Any culprit who has committed two or more crimes of voyeurism will face charges of a 3rd-degree felony, punishable by a 5-year prison sentence and a $5,000 fine. 

 Reaching a Verdict on a Case for Trespassing in a Building 

Florida Statute Title XLVI Chapter 810.08 and Criminal Jury Case 13.3 dictate that members of the court must prove (without any shred of doubt) that the defendant:  

  • Willingly and intentionally entered a building and/or remained inside this structure. 
  • Had entered the premises of this structure and had not previously received permission to do so from the owner, agent, proprietor, or other person who was legally associated with this building. 

Furthermore, the courts must determine that the alleged victim had been an owner or proprietor of this structure during the time the crime was committed. 

Under a similar situation, the members of the court must also prove that: 

  • The alleged owner had permitted the defendant to enter the premises of this building. 
  • The owner had warned the defendant to leave the building immediately. 
  • The defendant had refused to leave the structure after receiving this warning.  

If the defendant has been charged with carrying a gun or wielding any type of weapon on the property, the court must prove without any shred of doubt that this individual had carried a deadly weapon (for means of defense) while trespassing. 

Reaching a Verdict on a Case for Trespassing on Property Devoid of Structures  

Florida Statute Title XLVI Chapter 810.09(1) and Criminal Jury Case 13.4 dictate that members of the court must prove (without any shred of doubt) that the defendant:  

  • Had willingly and intentionally wandered onto this property (not categorized as a building or other structure in the State of Florida). 
  • Had intentionally wandered on this property (despite reading a sign and understanding this area was fenced or partitioned) with the intention of inflicting bodily harm on victims and/or damaging portions of this property. 

On a similar note, the court must determine the alleged victim legally and lawfully held ownership over this land during the time the crime took place and that this property had been fenced off (and contained a “no trespassing” sign). 

Once again, in the event that the defendant had been brandishing a weapon at the time of the crime, members of the court must prove (without any shred of doubt) that the culprit had been carrying this weapon for means of defense or deadly force during the time the offense occurred. 

Reaching a Verdict on a Case for Trespassing on School Property 

Florida Statute Title XLVI Chapter 810.097 and Criminal Jury Case 13.5(a) dictate that members of the court must prove (without any shred of doubt) that the defendant:  

  • Had wandered onto a school campus or property. 
  • Had wandered onto a school property operated by school administrators. 
  • Had not received authorization to enter the premises of this school. 
  • Was a student that had previously been expelled from the school. 

Have You Been Charged for Trespassing in Florida? Let Musca Law Get Your Charges Dropped

If you have been charged for a trespassing crime in the state of Florida, you can’t take any chances with your future or your freedom. Get in touch with one of our criminal defense attorneys at Musca Law in Naples, Florida to get your problems solved. Our combined 150+ years of legal experience with defense cases will support your rights as a citizen of Florida and help you receive well-deserved justice. 

We strive to combat the following cases: 

  • Lack of or improper warning signs on property
  • Later invitation on the property
  • Lack of intent to enter a property illegally
  • Landlord-tenant conflict about entrance

Don’t let a trespassing charge ruin the rest of your life. Let our legal team help you create a strong case to defend your rights. Our legal experience equips us to get your charges reduced or dropped entirely. Don’t hesitate to call us today at (239) 793-5297 to speak with a representative at our Naples office.

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