If I trespassed on private land with signs and threw trash in the owner’s dumpster, how serious will this be if they decide to prosecute?

Asked on July 28, 2015 under Criminal Law, Texas

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Criminal trespass like you are describing is a misdemeanor.  Sometimes they are handled as a ticket in JP court... but other times they do end up in county court.  There is a risk fo jail time... but considering the minimal instrusion to throw away something versus to steal something... you would be assessed a fine and possibly a short probation.  It is not a "throw the book at 'em and throw away the key," type case. 

With that... keep in mind that the effect of any conviction will depend on your circumstances.  Some people have government jobs which are jeopardized by a misdemeanor.  Others loose access to scholarships.  Even though there is not a huge risk of jail time (assuming that you don't have an extensive history), there may be other consequences that could affect your life.  If you haven't already done the deed... avoid trespassig to avoid any potential negative consequences.


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