NewsLocal News / February 25, 2014

House Passes Bill To Increase Trespassing Penalties

Allie Nash - TheStatehouseFile.com
House Passes Bill To Increase Trespassing Penalties

Trespassing on private property could soon carry more serious consequences under a bill passed Monday in the House.

Senate Bill 101 says that “no trespassing” signs do not have to be posted to tell people they are unwelcome on private property. Under current law, someone must be told verbally, or a sign must be posted to show that someone should not be there.

The bill would allow for people that come on private property and cause damages to be charged with criminal trespassing. “It is your land and people should stay off if it,” said Rep. Jud McMillin, R-Brookville.

And even if you are from the city, people should be aware. “If you come from the city and are walking around the country then you know it’s not yours,” said Rep. Jerry Torr, R- Carmel. “And if you are from the country you know what lands is and isn’t yours.”

Opponents of the bill said they are worried about unintentional trespassing, but McMillin said he doesn’t think that those people should be worried. “If it was an accident, it should be handled as an accident,” he said.

The bill passed 73-25 and now goes to Gov. Mike Pence for ratification.

Allie Nash is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students.