Unlawful Entry in the District of Columbia

Mark Rollins Criminal Law - DC, Criminal Law - Maryland, Traffic DC

Unlawful entry in the District of Columbia

Charged with unlawful Entry in the District of Columbia

 

Someone asked you to leave and you refused – then you may be charged with unlawful entry in the District of Columbia.  There are two types of unlawful entry cases in the District of Columbia, Private dwelling unlawful entry and public places unlawful entry cases.

 

Law in the District of Columbia Regarding Unlawful Entry (Private Dwelling)

  • Any person who, without lawful authority, shall enter, or attempt to enter, any private dwelling, building, or other property, or part of such dwelling, building, or other property, against the will of the lawful occupant or of the person lawfully in charge thereof, or being therein or thereon, without lawful authority to remain therein or thereon shall refuse to quit the same on the demand of the lawful occupant, or of the person lawfully in charge thereof, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor…

Penalty for Unlawful Entry Private Dwelling cases

If you refuse to leave or enter against the will of the lawful occupant you will be charged with Unlawful entry (Private dwelling).  You will not be entitled to a jury trial because the maximum exposure is 180 days and/or $1000.00 dollar fine.   Generally these are defended based on relevant notice given to the trespasser.   In other words,  did the person give adequate warnings that you were not allowed on the premises.     It is rare for cases like these to go to trial because the government typically offers diversion to resolve unlawful entry cases from private dwelling cases.

 

Law in the District of Columbia Regarding Unlawful Entry (Public Dwelling)

  • Any person who, without lawful authority, shall enter, or attempt to enter, any public building, or other property, or part of such building, or other property, against the will of the lawful occupant or of the person lawfully in charge thereof or his or her agent, or being therein or thereon, without lawful authority to remain therein or thereon shall refuse to quit the same on the demand of the lawful occupant, or of the person lawfully in charge thereof or his or her agent, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor….

Penalty for Unlawful Entry Public Places cases

If you refuse to leave or enter the will of the lawful occupant of a public building you may be entitled to a jury trial because the maximum exposure is 6 months and/or $1000.00 dollar fine.  These cases usually involve government buildings.  In other words, people protesting in a public area and then they are asked to leave and refuse.  The obvious difference between public and private unlawful entry cases is that public unlawful entry cases allow for a jury trial.  Public unlawful entry cases are usually resolved through diversion as well.

Conclusion

If you are charged with unlawful entry in DC you should call all our office and schedule a consultation to go over options and possible resolutions of your case.  We have handled hundreds of these types of cases.   Please call for a free consultation

Rollins and Chan Law Firm

419 7th Street, NW Suite 405
Washington DC, District of Columbia 20004
United States (US)
Phone: 202-455-5610

 

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