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What Is The Law On Trespass In Arkansas And What Are The Punishments For It?

Arkansas Code describes actions that amount to Criminal Trespass in Chapter 39 of Subtitle 4, which deals with offenses committed against property. The class of crime differs depending on the type of structure trespassed and the severity of the trespass. Criminal Trespass, upon conviction, is punishable by imprisonment, fine or both.

Let us find out more about Criminal Trespass law under Arkansas Code.

Criminal Trespass

According to section 5-39-203, an individual is guilty of committing a Criminal Trespass under the following conditions:

  • The individual, knowingly and unlawfully, enters into, or stays on, premises that belong to another individual by virtue of lease or ownership; or
  • The individual, on purpose, and unlawfully, enters, or stays put on, a vehicle belonging to another individual. The term “vehicle” includes anything that is used to transport people or property across land, air or water.

An individual charged with Criminal Trespass is guilty of Class A Misdemeanor if:

  • The individual, at the time of committing the act of Criminal Trespass, had in possession, any one or more of these items:

o Any weapon with blades, firearm, or any other object meant for killing in the act of lawful hunting of wildlife, or lawful fishing, when not used for the purpose mentioned herein;

o Any device or object that is used for harvesting, where such a weapon is used to collect or gather a bulk of agricultural produce or natural resource or assist in such collection or accumulation

Arkansas Trespassing Laws

o Any device the primary purpose of which is to locate and unearth artifacts that are either buried or submerged.

o Any tool that can be used for cutting through fences or breaking locks, including, but not limited to bolt cutters.

  • The individual, at the time of committing the Criminal Trespass, entered and stayed unlawfully on-premises that operate fishing or fish breeding for commercial purposes. The individual also, at the time of the said Trespass, had in possession, fishing equipment including a net or fishing rod or pole, to catch fish;
  • The individual who has committed the act of Criminal Trespass has already been convicted under this section.

An individual charged with Criminal Trespass is guilty of committing a Class B Misdemeanor if:

  • The premises or vehicle trespassed in the context of the crime is an occupiable structure, which includes any structure, including a building or vehicle:

o Used for commercial purposes such as a business, profession or occupation;

o Used as a place for assembly for reasons of business, governmental, religious, entertainment, educational, or public transportation;

o Used as a place of residence by an individual either on a regular basis or used in the capacity of an overnight accommodation by the individual irrespective of his presence at all times;

o Composed of separate residential units with each such unit under occupation. Each such unit is considered as a residential occupiable structure.

 Trespassing Laws Arkansas

  • The individual, at the time of Criminal Trespass, removes any sign posted on the structure involved or removes a fence or a part of it. The term “fence” refers to a structure that serves as a boundary, or as a barrier limiting access to the entry or exit of vehicles, people and livestock, in the area.

An individual charged with Criminal Trespass is guilty of a Class C Misdemeanor in case of any

conduct not covered under the above two subsections of Criminal Trespass.

An individual charged with Criminal Trespass is guilty of a Class D Felony if the individual has already been convicted more than once for Criminal Trespass amounting to Class A Misdemeanor, or for trespassing premises situated on an unincorporated location, which amounts to Criminal Trespass under section 5-39-305.

Punishment for Trespassing in Arkansas

  • Criminal Trespass amounting to a Class D Felony is punishable by imprisonment for a term not more than 6 years and/or a fine of an amount not more than $10, 000.
  • Criminal Trespass amounting to a Class A Misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 1 year and/ or a fine of an amount not exceeding $2, 500.
  • Criminal Trespass amounting to a Class B Misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 90 days and/ or a fine of an amount not more than $1, 000.
  • Criminal Trespass amounting to a Class C Misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 30 days and/ or a fine of an amount not more than $500.
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