Tonight I want to discuss permissions and lack there of. Today the family picked up our exchange student for this year. I mentioned to him that I was going to go detecting and he asked if he could go as well. I am excited to show him the ropes of detecting. I never imagined the first time out would end the way it did. I was originally planning to detect a site but quickly realized it was too wet. I decided to detect another homesite that I have detected several times in the last 8 months. I originally got permission from a gentleman that lives in one of 4 homes that are in a row all owned by the same person. While hunting a few months ago I had an elderly gentleman tell me he owned it and that I could detect the property as long as I followed the ethics I informed him about. I had been detecting for 30 minutes or so when all H**L broke loose . A man and women pulled up and stopped their car on the road. The male passenger quickly jumped out off the car and walked towards me briskly. He then yelled angrily at me asking what the F— I was doing. I said metal detecting. He immediately yelled at me that he owned the place and that I was trespassing. I apologized and said that I would leave and that I was sorry… He just kept getting louder and more belligerent. He asked me my name and I gave him my first name and he quickly wanted my last name. My response only made things worse.. I replied “you don’t need to know”. This guy was so hot headed that he wouldn’t just drop it even though I had been nothing but respectful and conforming up until this point. He even started raising a fist as to want to swing. I moved to the property next door that is only owned by one person whom I have permission from. The loudmouth just kept running his mouth from his property. I chose to ignore him. The next thing I know a local police officer pulls in and I greet him the a good evening and explain to him what happened. He went back and talked to the “homeowner” and then came back. Anyone that knows me knows that I don’t get too excited about much and I am glad I didn’t fuel the loaded cannon that was yelling and cussing. In the end the police officer was very cordial and mentioned that I get permission to hunt in writing. I like this idea but I have to wonder if it will detour some from allowing me to detect. Do most people get written consent to hunt private property? I hadn’t given it much thought but since this isn’t the first time there has been a conflict over permission I am considering it. I have been through some odd situations concerning permissions. Renters giving permission, renters saying no after owner said yes, and husband saying no after wife says yes, and then this evenings deal I’m still not certain of…
Now I have read the trespassing laws in Kansas and I know legally I had done nothing wrong. However, I am sure this evenings events made our new exchange student uncomfortable and I know for a fact that I was embarrassed by them. Here is the Kansas trespassing law for those who are interested. You don’t need to read real close to see some big gray areas. The way I read it you are not committing a a crime if on unfenced, unmarked property until you are defiant in leaving after being asked to do so. I don’t encourage blurring the line intentionally because it doesn’t look good for our hobby! What are your thoughts?
Statute 21-3721: Criminal trespass. (a) Criminal trespass is:
(1) Entering or remaining upon or in any land, nonnavigable body of water, structure, vehicle, aircraft or watercraft, other than railroad property as defined in K.S.A. 21-3761, and amendments thereto, or nuclear generating facility as defined in K.S.A. 2007 Supp. 66-2302, and amendments thereto, by a person who knows such person is not authorized or privileged to do so, and:
(A) Such person enters or remains therein in defiance of an order not to enter or to leave such premises or property personally communicated to such person by the owner thereof or other authorized person; or
(B) such premises or property are posted in a manner reasonably likely to come to the attention of intruders, or are locked or fenced or otherwise enclosed, or shut or secured against passage or entry; or
(C) such person enters or remains therein in defiance of a restraining order issued pursuant to K.S.A. 60-1607, 60-3105, 60-3106, 60-3107, 60-31a05 or 60-31a06 or K.S.A. 2007 Supp. 38-2243, 38-2244 or 38-2255, and amendments thereto, and the restraining order has been personally served upon the person so restrained; or
(2) entering or remaining upon or in any public or private land or structure in a manner that interferes with access to or from any health care facility by a person who knows such person is not authorized or privileged to do so and such person enters or remains thereon or therein in defiance of an order not to enter or to leave such land or structure personally communicated to such person by the owner of the health care facility or other authorized person.
(b) As used in this section:
(1) “Health care facility” means any licensed medical care facility, certificated health maintenance organization, licensed mental health center, or mental health clinic, licensed psychiatric hospital or other facility or office where services of a health care provider are provided directly to patients.
(2) “Health care provider” means any person: (A) Licensed to practice a branch of the healing arts; (B) licensed to practice psychology; (C) licensed to practice professional or practical nursing; (D) licensed to practice dentistry; (E) licensed to practice optometry; (F) licensed to practice pharmacy; (G) registered to practice podiatry; (H) licensed as a social worker; or (I) registered to practice physical therapy.
(c) (1) Criminal trespass is a class B nonperson misdemeanor.
(2) Upon a conviction of a violation of subsection (a)(1)(C), a person shall be sentenced to not less than 48 consecutive hours of imprisonment which must be served either before or as a condition of any grant of probation or suspension, reduction of sentence or parole.
(d) This section shall not apply to a land surveyor, licensed pursuant to article 70 of chapter 74 of the Kansas Statutes Annotated, and amendments thereto, and such surveyor’s authorized agents and employees who enter upon lands, waters and other premises in the making of a survey.