A continuing trespass charge might seem like a minor inconvenience for some, but any time you’re dealing with the criminal justice system, you should have a skilled and experienced defense attorney by your side. Whether you’re dealing with some type of land dispute or you’re having landlord or tenant issues, speaking with an attorney needs to be your first step after an arrest. It’s possible you could also be dealing with additional criminal charges. Depending upon the circumstances of your case, you could also be facing a civil lawsuit, so clearing your name in court should be your first priority.
What is a Continuing Trespass Charge?
Continuing trespass is basically an ongoing or repeated trespass. This isn’t for a on-time problem. You shouldn’t get slapped with continuing trespass on your first offense or unlawful entry onto somebody else’s property. This type of charge deals with ongoing problems, especially where real property is involved. Sometimes, it may not be as simple as you unlawfully entering another person’s property or land. Perhaps, a structure of yours is built on somebody else’s land, due to improper surveying or some other type of building issue. Neighbor disputes often involve trespass and continuing trespass charges.
Examples of Continuing Trespass
- Building a road that extends to a neighbor’s property
- Unlawfully entering another person’s property on more than one occasion
- Piling garbage on somebody else’s property repeatedly
- Not removing debris or limbs from downed trees that originate on your property and fell into a neighbor’s.
Continuing trespass charges are typically misdemeanors. This means that you could face up to one year in jail, in addition to fines. In most cases, you would probably not do that much time, but all cases are different. Your criminal defense attorney will have a plan for your defense that best suits your individual circumstances. It is possible to have additional charges, especially if there was some type of confrontation and emotions were running high.
The Original Trespass
It’s important to note that a charge of continuing trespass is not a one-time thing. This charge happens because of a repeated problem. Perhaps, you’ve already received a warning of trespass about a certain situation or property. That the original problem or trespass wasn’t solved or properly observed is why a continuing trespass would be issued. In many cases, these are simply misunderstandings, but don’t count on the justice system as being able to swiftly see your side of the story. The sooner you talk to an experienced criminal defense attorney, the better.
Depending upon the unique circumstances of your case, you could be facing a variety of additional charges. Sure, the continuing trespass charge may not sound too ominous to first-time offenders, but what about the addition of assault and battery? Charges and potential punishments can add up quickly. Was there a confrontation or altercation associated with the trespass? Did it get physical? Did you have a weapon at the time? You could quickly be looking at additional misdemeanor or even felony charges. In an instant, you could be facing years behind bars and a total loss of freedom.
Defenses to Continuing Trespass
There are a variety of different defenses to trespass charges. Emergency situations have to be taken into account. Perhaps, you did have permission from the land or property owner, but there has been some type of misunderstanding. Many times, landowners simply do not understand the law well enough to distinguish between lawful and unlawful entry. Because these cases can often deal with months or years-long relationships, it’s a good idea to have a lawyer on your side who can take emotion completely out of it. Every case is different, and your lawyer will help to determine the best defense based on the unique circumstances of your case.
Should I Call a Defense Lawyer?
Whether you’re facing one charge of continuing trespass or multiple additional charges that include felonies, your top priority needs to be speaking with a skilled and proven criminal defense attorney. The sooner you talk to a lawyer, the better. Your lawyer needs to get to work on your defense. It may not feel like that serious of a charge, but any conviction on your criminal record is likely to follow you around for years.
If you or somebody you love is facing continuing trespass charges in or around the Jackson Metro Area, contact the skilled legal team at Coxwell & Associates, PLLC at (601) 265-7766 today for an immediate consultation.
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