Posted 02-08-2005 at 07:38:28
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First understand that there are two kinds of trespassing. Civil and criminal. Criminal trespassing normally requires no trespassing notices and then someone's entry despite the notices. In PA, just climbing over a livestock fence is trespassing even without the signs. Civil trespassing however, is any unconsented entry onto, under or over your property (except for airplanes),,,,by anything. Throwing a piece of trash onto your property is trespassing as is shooting across your property even though the bullet doesn't land on it. Noise and fumes do not count. However, depending on your state, there may may a law against "worrying" sheep. In old England, it didn't matter if the cause of the sheeps fear came from off the property. for instance a dog running the sheep can be on his owners' side of the fence/boundary line, but because he is running the sheep on your property, it is an illegal act. Same would go for running ATV's along the fence.
For criminal trespass, charges are generally filed by the police, and if your state permits, you can file an application for criminal charges if the police don't. For civil trespass, you can file a civil suit for damages. Some states require actual damage be done to property before you can sue for civil trespass. Most states do not require damages to the property, because the trespass is an act against you rights of exclusive use and possession. In your particular case, if you were in the line a fire, you can sue for infliction of emotional distress. Suing minors is a whole complication in itself however.
Some states have public nuisance laws which would allow you to sue for an injunction, or damages because of the general harrassment of the ATV noise, shooting etc.
There are a host of options depending on the case, reporting the children's dangerous acts to the child protection services for negligent endangerment of themselves and others by the parent's lack of supervision. Now if the ATV's tearing up the yard cause silt etc to be washed onto your property, you may have a complaint to the conservation people and an additional grounds for a nuisance suit.
|Mrs Peanut ||
Posted 02-08-2005 at 09:12:04
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I had a frightening experience with a stalker five years ago. Peanut was ready to take things into his own hands because we were receiving little satisfaction or protection from our local police.
My son and several of his friends even went as far as confronting this guy (which led the guy straight to the emergency room) and he still continued to deal me problems at work, and at home. (BTW, my son just shared that info with me several years after the fact.) I would never encourage Peanut or my son to take matters into their own hands simply out of fear of one of them getting hurt or having trouble with the law.
After numerous calls to the police and several orders of protection against this person, the problem still continued for a year and a half. I finally wrote to the prosecuting attorney in our area and he gave me the much needed advice to rid myself of this nuisance. Here is what I had to do every time a new violation was committed.
1) Call the police; insist the police give you a report number for every incident.
2) Take pictures
3) Log all events and be very detailed.
It took at least 20 police reports for the prosecutor to take action against this person.
The legal way is a lengthy process and most times frustrating; but it did end the stalking and have been psycho free for 3 years….
I hope everything works out for you and Matt…And soon.