Criminal Trespass

Columbus and Delaware, Ohio Criminal Defense Attorney

If you have been charged with a misdemeanor offense in Columbus or Delaware, Ohio, contact Johnson Legal, LLC and speak with an experienced Columbus and Delaware, Ohio criminal defense attorney. Attorney David Johnson of Johnson Legal, LLC will discuss your case and assist you in fighting the charges. Call (614) 987-0192 or send an email to schedule a consultation regarding your misdemeanor offense case.

What is Criminal Trespass?

Criminal trespass is defined in 2911.21 of the Ohio Revised Code. Specifically, criminal trespass is defined as knowingly entering or staying in a person’s house or building, or entering or staying on their land, without their permission to do so. Moreover, any person who commits any of the following acts without privilege to do so can be charged with criminal trespass:

  • Knowingly enter or remain on another person’s property or land where access is restricted to certain persons, hours or purposes;
  • Refusing or failing to leave land or premises after being given notice to leave by signs or restrictive fencing; or
  • Refusing or failing to leave land or premises after being specifically told to do so.

Land or premises can include a building, structure or a placed belonging to, in the custody of or in the control of another person or entity. It can also include any room or enclosure on the land or premises.

It is not a defense to argue that the person was permitted to enter or remain on the land or premises when that authorization was secured or obtained through deception.

Penalties for Criminal Trespass in Ohio

Criminal trespass is a 4th degree misdemeanor in Ohio. This charge carries up to 30 days in jail and a $250 fine. However, this fine can double if certain elements are met, including operating a snowmobile, off-highway motorcycle or all-purpose vehicle while committing criminal trespass.

In addition to criminal penalties, there are secondary consequences for criminal trespass conviction. These include difficulty maintaining your current employment, obtaining future employment, and maintaining professional licenses. Criminal trespass is a serious offense under Ohio law and, if convicted, will be on your permanent criminal record.

Ohio Defenses to Criminal Trespass

Several defenses exist for criminal trespass in Ohio, including consent, public necessity and private necessity. If you obtained consent to enter the property or building, then you are permitted to be on the land or in the building. Consent can be given through words, actions or written permission. However, consent is not valid if it was obtained by deception.

A defense could also exist based on either public or private necessity. Public necessity is where you commit a trespass in order to protect the public during an emergency. However, this necessity must be immediate and you must have a good faith belief that the trespass was to protect public safety. Private necessity is where you enter onto the property or land of another to protect someone (including yourself) from death or serious bodily harm.

Criminal Defense Attorney – Columbus and Delaware, Ohio 

If you have been charged with criminal trespass, you should hire an attorney immediately. Contact Attorney David Johnson of Johnson Legal, LLC and speak with an experienced Columbus and Delaware, Ohio criminal defense attorney. Attorney Johnson will examine your case and assist you in putting forth the strongest defense possible. Call Johnson Legal, LLC at (614) 987-0192 or send Attorney David Johnson an email.