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Defiant Trespass

February 9, 2012 by staff 

Defiant Trespass, Defiant trespass occurs when a person not licensed or privileged to do so, enters or remains in any place as to which notice against trespass is clearly provided.

Example of a state law on Defiant Trespass.

In New Jersey, defiant trespass can occur in a property normally open to public if notice against trespass is given by:

a. Actual communication to the actor

b. Posting in a manner prescribed by law or reasonably likely to come to the attention of intruders

c. Fencing or other enclosure manifestly designed to exclude intruders.

However a person charged with defiant trespass can take the following affirmative defenses:

The structure was at the time open to members of the public and the actor Complied With All Lawful Conditions Imposed On Access To Or Remaining In The structure; or
The actor reasonably believed that the owner of the structure, or other person empowered to license access thereto, would have licensed him to enter or remain.
The relevant law in New Jersey reads as follows.

N.J. Stat. ยง 2C:18-3 [Title 2c. The New Jersey Code Of Criminal Justice; Subtitle 2. Specific Offenses; Part 2. Offenses Against Property Chapter 18. Burglary]

b. Defiant trespasser. A person commits a petty disorderly persons offense if, knowing that he is not licensed or privileged to do so, he enters or remains in any place as to which notice against trespass is given by:

(1) Actual communication to the actor; or

(2) Posting in a manner prescribed by law or reasonably likely to come to the attention of intruders; or

(3) Fencing or other enclosure manifestly designed to exclude intruders.

d. Defenses. It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under this section that:

(1) A structure involved in an offense under subsection a. was abandoned;

(2) The structure was at the time open to members of the public and the actor complied with all lawful conditions imposed on access to or remaining in the structure; or

(3) The actor reasonably believed that the owner of the structure, or other person empowered to license access thereto, would have licensed him to enter or remain, or, in the case of subsection c. of this section, to peer.

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