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Trespassing

 
Posts: 132
Location: Missouri
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Well My dad has always been a competition shooter. I cannot remember a time when we did not have a shooting range on our property. SO dad always had signs posted around the property line that read "BEWARE LIVE FIRE SHOOTING RANGE". Dad's insurance agent actually suggested it just in case a trespasser did wander in downrange and accidentally got shot. The signs never read as a threat to shoot anyone just a warning that if your hanging around here you might accidentally get shot. There was ALWAYS something going BANG! on the Cover property so it wasn't a hard sell. I don't ever remember having people on our property that didn't ask first.

For us that worked because we DID in fact have an actual bench rest range on our property and one of us was always working up a new load or busting clays or trying out a new gun etc. If you never shoot a gun at your place such a thing may not work for you.

Another thing that I think helped my family is that we were either related to or very good friends with our neighbors. IF someone was out of place in the area, you usually got a phone call from a neighbor because they have to pass through his place to get to yours. Back then neighbors were almost like family and everyone helped everyone out. A couple drunk stray hunters might want to take on a single man defending his property but not the man a five or six of his neighbors. The shame of it is that in our modern society we have all turned into crayfish and run to the empty corner and fend for ourselves. That sense of neighborhood "family" dynamic is harder to find now days.

Ray

 
              
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for those with a parking issue, get one or more of those tire boots and be creative about the number you put on it. drug dealing neighbor, guy across the country, your own 900 number to offset...
 
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One of the most effective no-trespassing signs I've ever seen was a piece of plywood spray-painted with the words "Trespassers will be shot." Two of the words were misspelled and two of the "s"'s were backwards. My friend has it propped up against his fence next to the gate. He doesn't have ANY problems. Everyone, including the nearby drug dealers, thinks he's a crazy hillbilly and, for the record, he would only actually shoot someone if they were breaking in his house. The sign is legal in our state. Our land is in a decent area; we haven't had any problems, and the "No Hunting" and "No Trespassing" signs seem to work.
 
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Location: Harrisonburg, VA
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Personally speaking, if I had more land than the 1/2 I'm on I would hire a lawyer to give me a written statement explaining my rights. I would check it with the local sheriff and most of all I would hope that the statement would read that I could shoot anyone on my land with a visible gun who lacked a badge. Plain and simple if someone came onto my land armed, I would want to right to shoot them. It seems harsh to even me but if I had armed drunks wandering around my land I'd want them dead, ask questions after I know my family is safe. "Hunters" who drink while "hunting" don't deserve respect. I am a fan of hunting, and the occasional drink but wtf people! I have no idea about the legality of this but it seems to me with all the Florida news, this is the type of laws that we should be aiming for (pun accidental but...).
 
David Miller
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Ray Cover wrote:
Joined: Apr 11, 2012
Posts: 28
Location: Missouri

[Post New]posted Today 09:20:47
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Quote Edit
Well My dad has always been a competition shooter. I cannot remember a time when we did not have a shooting range on our property. SO dad always had signs posted around the property line that read "BEWARE LIVE FIRE SHOOTING RANGE". Dad's insurance agent actually suggested it just in case a trespasser did wander in downrange and accidentally got shot. The signs never read as a threat to shoot anyone just a warning that if your hanging around here you might accidentally get shot. There was ALWAYS something going BANG! on the Cover property so it wasn't a hard sell. I don't ever remember having people on our property that didn't ask first.

For us that worked because we DID in fact have an actual bench rest range on our property and one of us was always working up a new load or busting clays or trying out a new gun etc. If you never shoot a gun at your place such a thing may not work for you.

Another thing that I think helped my family is that we were either related to or very good friends with our neighbors. IF someone was out of place in the area, you usually got a phone call from a neighbor because they have to pass through his place to get to yours. Back then neighbors were almost like family and everyone helped everyone out. A couple drunk stray hunters might want to take on a single man defending his property but not the man a five or six of his neighbors. The shame of it is that in our modern society we have all turned into crayfish and run to the empty corner and fend for ourselves. That sense of neighborhood "family" dynamic is harder to find now days.

Ray



Ray, I take your point. Perhaps nurturing relationships with neighbors is the key here. I had a neighbor (urban setting) who was most certainly dealing something. I found him on the porch one day, took him a beer, introduced myself and drank a beer with him. Gave him my number and told him if he ever had a break-in to give me a call and I'd back him up (with the implied, I'll come out armed) and I never had trouble from him. He was kinda nice (aside from having "customers" show up at all hours). I never implied that I knew what he was up to, I tried to just act neighborly and he reciprocated. I wanted him to realize that I was armed but "on his side". Can't really say in hindsight if it was the smartest thing I've ever done but it did work out.
 
master pollinator
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Not convinced it's the best thing to tell folks you own guns, especially if they are a "criminal element" as they might think your house is a good one to rob when you're not home, as they can watch your house all the time and see when you leave....
 
Ray Cover
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Personally, I would much rather the criminal element think I am overly armed and dangerous than to beleive my best protection is a phone with which to call 911.

Fact of the matter is. Everyone,... every single person on this forum has something valuable in their home that a crack head burglar can sell for money.... and every crackhead burglar knows it. Does not matter if its power tools, a stash of emergency cash, the aluminum gutters off your house, or your wood cook stove (yes my grandmother had hers stolen once by a bunch of kids who sold it to buy pot) every burglar knows every home has SOMETHING. Furthermore, it is a safe assumption that most rural dwellings have a gun or two on the premises and most burglars know this anyway. Firearms are as big a part of rural culture (around here anyway) as growing a garden or having a wood stove.

I say why not make it clear to them that you intend to make it dangerous proposition.

JMHO

Ray
 
Ray Cover
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David,

That is a good point. When I was growing up all of our neighbors were good conscientious people. I currently have one of those you describe across the street. The police are there a couple times a month it seems. Times and people have changed in the last 30-40 years. However, I can say that the rest of my neighbors are decent people and we do watch out for each other. They may belly ache when my grass gets a little too high or I plant blackberry briers instead of flowers but when it comes down to whats important they would help out even if it was as mundane as calling the police and snapping a picture of the guy leaving my house.

On a side note. My neighbors know this family has guns both my daughters shoot on shooting teams and they see the arsenal and cases of ammo going from the house to the truck on a regular basis. My house has never been touched. I don't beleive the fact that people know you have guns is in and of itself an invitation to rob.

Ray
 
Tyler Ludens
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But it isn't dangerous if you're not home. That's my point.

 
David Miller
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Tyler, your point is valid. I think it illustrates the need to cultivate community if and when possible. We can't be everywhere and even when armed we can't be assured of safety. Strength does come in numbers. To me, an all of the above strategy seems closest to ideal. A gun safe isn't the worst idea ever either.
 
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I'm new to this forum, and a frequent "trespasser"... Albeit I don't do anything like poaching, littering, or destroying property. I am a simple catch and release fisherman and sometimes the creeks and streams I fish run though private property or I need to pass though private property to get to state owned grounds. As long as someone is not doing something destructive I see no reason why some of the people on this forum feel the need to govern their land as if it was their own country, especially if you own quite a bit of land , say 10+ acres. I never had a problem with this... I've also never been noticed trespassing. It kind of disturbs me to find out that there are some people who think they have the right to kill someone else if they find them on your land. It's disgusting and inhumane way of thinking.
 
Ray Cover
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Bradley, Dont' think that just because a person feels a need to defend their property that they are some kind of blood thirsty killer waiting for the chance to shoot someone. That just isn't reality. I have two teenage daughters and a wife whose safety I am resposnsible for. I cannot take the chance that the stranger lurking through my property is there with noble intentions. If I don't know that person I will run them off, at gunpoint if necessary.

I don't know how things work where you live but around here we are taught to ask a landowners permission if we need to cross their property while hunting and fishing. Its considered part fo being a responsible outdoorsman and respectful to the people whose land your crossing. That is even part of the hunter safety class you have to take to get a hunting license here. It is very disrrespectful to trudge across someones land without permission as if you "own the road" so to speak. Its just common courtesy when you think about it. I think you will find that most folks won't mind if you ask them politely and explain to them your purpose. If they say no you respect that.

Ray
 
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If EVERYONE followed leave no trace, most landowners bordering state lands would not have an issue. But usually there is a trail of garbage, feces, and destroyed vegetation and you are guilty by association when caught until you can prove otherwise.

 
David Miller
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Bradley Laughlin wrote:I'm new to this forum, and a frequent "trespasser"... Albeit I don't do anything like poaching, littering, or destroying property. I am a simple catch and release fisherman and sometimes the creeks and streams I fish run though private property or I need to pass though private property to get to state owned grounds. As long as someone is not doing something destructive I see no reason why some of the people on this forum feel the need to govern their land as if it was their own country, especially if you own quite a bit of land , say 10+ acres. I never had a problem with this... I've also never been noticed trespassing. It kind of disturbs me to find out that there are some people who think they have the right to kill someone else if they find them on your land. It's disgusting and inhumane way of thinking.



You should also note that I said visibly armed. Fishing rods don't count
 
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Bradley Laughlin wrote:I'm new to this forum, and a frequent "trespasser"... Albeit I don't do anything like poaching, littering, or destroying property. I am a simple catch and release fisherman and sometimes the creeks and streams I fish run though private property or I need to pass though private property to get to state owned grounds. As long as someone is not doing something destructive I see no reason why some of the people on this forum feel the need to govern their land as if it was their own country, especially if you own quite a bit of land , say 10+ acres. I never had a problem with this... I've also never been noticed trespassing. It kind of disturbs me to find out that there are some people who think they have the right to kill someone else if they find them on your land. It's disgusting and inhumane way of thinking.



I think shooting someone for simple trespassing would be over the top.

I do hope you don't come trespassing on my road. My neighbour across the road has a 500+ acre cow pasture and he raises black Angus with natural management techniques. Including natural breeding rather than IV. That means that he has a herd of approximately 100 cows and for part of the year, there's a bull turned out with them. Since the cows rule the herd, the bull pays more attention to what is going on outside the herd.

His cattle thrive, their parasite loads are almost nil because they aren't too crowded and over the years, he's gotten to where they rarely have problems calving or have any other health problems.

That pasture is close to a square mile and has a year round creek flowing through it with a couple ponds. The land itself is lightly wooded with lots of grass. I do think it is the most beautiful piece of land in the state. That pasture is so large that you can't always see the herd of 100 cow/calf pairs on it.

I can just about guarantee you, though, that you are not faster than a pissed off black Angus bull or a large herd of pissed off black Angus cows (this time of year, with new calves on the ground, those girls are highly defensive).

And your fishing pole will not help you.
 
David Miller
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On a side-note, remember that in the US, waterways are public so unless you're traipsing through someone's land to get to a waterway, you aren't trespassing. Again to reinforce, we're talking about drunk "hunters" trespassing on marked land who endanger everyone near them. I've never shot a person, or at a person, but if a group of grown drunk men were wandering around my hypothetical homestead shooting anything in sight, I'd consider it (if we didn't have such good law enforcement, luckily my area does).
 
gardener
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I don't have problems with trespassers per se, but rather one of my neighbors across the highway from my house occasionally shoots into my property.
There have been at least two occasions when I was walking my dogs through the woods in front of my house and heard shots and had them whiz by within 10 feet of me.
I can only imagine that he thought he saw a deer on my property, and that he is a complete moron.
First of all, its illegal in the state of Georgia to shoot across a highway, second of all he is obviously shooting at my property, and at things he cannot really see very well.

The first time it happened I thought it was a simple mistake, that he was target shooting on his own property and didn't realize how far his shots were going, but the second time there were 3-4 shots within 10 seconds right in the general area where I was walking.

The second time I called the cops. A deputy came out, wrote some stuff on a pad, drove up the neighbors driveway and turned around and went back to town. This was last memorial day.

Just in the last week or so I'm pretty sure he shot towards my property again, as I heard the report of the gun, and then a split second later I heard something hit a tree or something in my yard.


I really don't know what to do at this point as I cannot see exactly which neighbor it is that is doing this, and it happens so randomly- 6 months might go by before it happens again.
I've thought of putting up a " no hunting" sign at the edge of my property where all my neighbors on that side of the highway will see it, or even my own sign saying "STOP shooting at my house!" , that way everyone that lives up there will see it.


On the other hand, the pissed off scared sh*tless side of me has thought of shooting back. I don't have faith in the police, as I cannot show them any evidence. Of course, if I shoot back, then I sabotage any legal recourse I might have.

 
David Miller
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Have you talked with him (your neighbor)?
 
Cris Bessette
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David Miller wrote:Have you talked with him (your neighbor)?


.

Thats the thing- I don't know who it doing it- there are a few houses on the side of the mountain over there. There are some definitely redneck types over there.
I'm also not a confrontational type of person, I've been ruined by that hippy peace and love crap lol.
 
David Miller
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I dig it man, that's my MO usually too. Suggestion: Take a six pack to each neighbor, offer them a beer in a hey wanna drink a beer, I've got a little trouble on my land that I thought I'd warn you about too kinda way. Tell them you were grazed by a bullet and have no idea who it was but wanted to warn your neighbors to keep an eye out. If they get skiddish just assume it was them and go from there. If they're thankful for the warning then take their number down, give them yours and have a little nice to meet you moment. This situation is even better if you take beer you've brewed, its an excuse to give away beer as most brewers go overboard. Just an idea, plus its a non confrontational approach that will warn the offending neighbor that they've been trying to kill you, hopefully unintentionally. Either way you might find out who it is and build community in the process., my two cents
 
Bradley McLoghlin
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Ray Cover wrote:Bradley, Dont' think that just because a person feels a need to defend their property that they are some kind of blood thirsty killer waiting for the chance to shoot someone. That just isn't reality. I have two teenage daughters and a wife whose safety I am resposnsible for. I cannot take the chance that the stranger lurking through my property is there with noble intentions. If I don't know that person I will run them off, at gunpoint if necessary.

I don't know how things work where you live but around here we are taught to ask a landowners permission if we need to cross their property while hunting and fishing. Its considered part fo being a responsible outdoorsman and respectful to the people whose land your crossing. That is even part of the hunter safety class you have to take to get a hunting license here. It is very disrrespectful to trudge across someones land without permission as if you "own the road" so to speak. Its just common courtesy when you think about it. I think you will find that most folks won't mind if you ask them politely and explain to them your purpose. If they say no you respect that.

Ray



I just think that it's unfair for everyone else that you automatically assume everyone who you don't know has ill intentions. It's one thing to start assuming if they are close to your house, vehicles, or storage building. Maybe I'm a different situation then a "drunk hunter" because I travel very far from my home to fish in the locations that I do. I may go several counties out of my own. The fact is I don't always know who owns the land so asking permission is out of the question. To be honest, if I was told in person that I may not use their land; I just drove two hours out, I'm not packing up my things and going home, I'm going fishin'.

I'm not a hunter (though I plan on starting soon) I do shoot though. I never attended safety shooting classes or anything but my Dad always told me that if you ever point a gun at someone your intentions better be to kill, and to follow up with several other shots. I'm not sure if this is common among other people but I completely understand why. Running someone off at gunpoint would be totally irresponsible, even if they had unconcealed weapons. That's a recipe to start a disaster.

I totally understand the bull issue however. I have a friend who actually escaped a bull encounter picking mushrooms. He was lucky. Where I live we don't have big ranch style pasture's, just smaller pastures that are normally enclosed in barb wire. I most certainly don't go around hoping fences. I don't see how someone getting trampled, torn up, and tossed like a beach ball to be your problem though?
 
Rose Black
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Bradley Laughlin wrote:
I just think that it's unfair for everyone else that you automatically assume everyone who you don't know has ill intentions. It's one thing to start assuming if they are close to your house, vehicles, or storage building. Maybe I'm a different situation then a "drunk hunter" because I travel very far from my home to fish in the locations that I do. I may go several counties out of my own. The fact is I don't always know who owns the land so asking permission is out of the question. To be honest, if I was told in person that I may not use their land; I just drove two hours out, I'm not packing up my things and going home, I'm going fishin'.



So, if the landowner saw you walking across their fields to get to what you think would be a nice fishing hole and asked you to leave... you would persist?

Around these parts, the standard operating protocol for dealing with people like that is to let the air out of all four tires and then call the sheriff's department.

I totally understand the bull issue however. I have a friend who actually escaped a bull encounter picking mushrooms. He was lucky. Where I live we don't have big ranch style pasture's, just smaller pastures that are normally enclosed in barb wire. I most certainly don't go around hoping fences. I don't see how someone getting trampled, torn up, and tossed like a beach ball to be your problem though?



Where I live, most farmers practise intensive livestock raising practises (feedlots, etc).

Yeah, if you're fast enough and run away from the cows, the bull will lose interest in chasing once you get a certain distance away. He'll go back to check on his cows while you continue running... if you know what's good for you. Cattle are not stupid and if you come back, you'll discover his defensive zone where you individually are concerned has grown.

If you end up batttered and tattered, it's not my problem. I was trying to point out that there can be hazards that are not readily apparent to a stranger on the land and if you choose to disrespect clearly posted land, ethically, any bad results should fall on you alone.

The reality, though, is that there are too many people who would then sue the owner of the bull. Feh.
 
              
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Bradley Laughlin wrote:I'm new to this forum, and a frequent "trespasser"... Albeit I don't do anything like poaching, littering, or destroying property. I am a simple catch and release fisherman and sometimes the creeks and streams I fish run though private property or I need to pass though private property to get to state owned grounds. As long as someone is not doing something destructive I see no reason why some of the people on this forum feel the need to govern their land as if it was their own country, especially if you own quite a bit of land , say 10+ acres. I never had a problem with this... I've also never been noticed trespassing. It kind of disturbs me to find out that there are some people who think they have the right to kill someone else if they find them on your land. It's disgusting and inhumane way of thinking.



There is a 'right to roam' some places in the world. If you are roaming and of good mind, i think you will in general be okay. You have to use common sense, and it's probably good you read different points of view here, as it will help you see where people are coming from, which may help you if you ever have an encounter. I use to get trespassers all the time where i live. The city and their slaves tend to be the worst offenders of late. I tend to approach most trespassers and ask them what they are doing and let them know of potential hazards on the land and issues i have had. I let them know they are welcome to 'roam' certain areas, but i'd appreciate it if they'd keep an eye out and let me know if they see people tearing up the property.

things are not what they use to be. you use to be able to take a gun to school with you. now they kick you out if you draw a gun.

i believe laws distinguish between posted and not posted, fenced and not fenced... i think it even distinguishes between a locked door and unlocked door.
 
              
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David Miller wrote:On a side-note, remember that in the US, waterways are public so unless you're traipsing through someone's land to get to a waterway, you aren't trespassing. Again to reinforce, we're talking about drunk "hunters" trespassing on marked land who endanger everyone near them. I've never shot a person, or at a person, but if a group of grown drunk men were wandering around my hypothetical homestead shooting anything in sight, I'd consider it (if we didn't have such good law enforcement, luckily my area does).



David, for the record, not all waterways are public in the states. If it was a deeded waterway from the kings grant... you can own it, and i know of several in north carolina and virginia. I believe west of a certain place you are correct.

There have been some issues with people not wanting fishing going on in their 'private property' and though you may be allowed to 'travel' through on the river, you are not allowed to stop or have your hook in the water... unless it has been overturned since i last read up on it.
 
              
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David Miller wrote:I dig it man, that's my MO usually too. Suggestion: Take a six pack to each neighbor, offer them a beer in a hey wanna drink a beer, I've got a little trouble on my land that I thought I'd warn you about too kinda way. Tell them you were grazed by a bullet and have no idea who it was but wanted to warn your neighbors to keep an eye out. If they get skiddish just assume it was them and go from there. If they're thankful for the warning then take their number down, give them yours and have a little nice to meet you moment. This situation is even better if you take beer you've brewed, its an excuse to give away beer as most brewers go overboard. Just an idea, plus its a non confrontational approach that will warn the offending neighbor that they've been trying to kill you, hopefully unintentionally. Either way you might find out who it is and build community in the process., my two cents



Sounds like a great idea. you may find a kid, a person of lower intelligence or even someone who's just clueless was behind the trigger.
It's a good way to find out before you get shot.
 
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I just think that it's unfair for everyone else that you automatically assume everyone who you don't know has ill intentions. It's one thing to start assuming if they are close to your house, vehicles, or storage building. Maybe I'm a different situation then a "drunk hunter" because I travel very far from my home to fish in the locations that I do. I may go several counties out of my own. The fact is I don't always know who owns the land so asking permission is out of the question. To be honest, if I was told in person that I may not use their land; I just drove two hours out, I'm not packing up my things and going home, I'm going fishin'.

I'm not a hunter (though I plan on starting soon) I do shoot though. I never attended safety shooting classes or anything but my Dad always told me that if you ever point a gun at someone your intentions better be to kill, and to follow up with several other shots. I'm not sure if this is common among other people but I completely understand why. Running someone off at gunpoint would be totally irresponsible, even if they had unconcealed weapons. That's a recipe to start a disaster.

I totally understand the bull issue however. I have a friend who actually escaped a bull encounter picking mushrooms. He was lucky. Where I live we don't have big ranch style pasture's, just smaller pastures that are normally enclosed in barb wire. I most certainly don't go around hoping fences. I don't see how someone getting trampled, torn up, and tossed like a beach ball to be your problem though?

Bradley, there is good news and bad news. Good news is your dad taught you the number one rule when handling a gun which is don't point at anything or anyone you don't want a hole in. The bad news is that he failed to teach respect for other peoples property. It's pretty simple...if you don't know who owns the land don't go trouncing around on it. The fact that you drove a couple hours is irrelevant. There are areas where land owners have major issues with thieves, poachers, etc, and rightly have a first instinct to protect their family. Not to even mention that you have no idea if someone is hunting or just shooting in your direction. Bottom line is, if not out of respect, you should value your life enough not to put it in danger or catch a stray bullet.
 
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On my grounds (tiny patch o' soil compared to the lands some on these forums own) I have my house, my officebuilding (I own a lawfirm *let the joking commence*) and my gardens. Lo and behold, a few days back, there was an old bitty in my garden, merrily plucking away at my rhubarb. I've confronted her but she was just like "well, there's enough to go around, so don't fuss about it".

I bought this sign a few years back as a joke, but now I'm thinking of putting it up outside:


As there is a shooting club up the road that shares the same name as our office, it might have some impact...
 
Rebecca Brown
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I would like to say, for the record, that many states have laws that make it perfectly legal to shoot at trespassers. You're supposed to ask them to leave first. If they don't leave, you're legal if you do shoot at them in those states.

I would also like to point out that anyone who is on private property and refuses to leave when asked politely almost certainly does have ill intentions. In our case, we are two women who will be living alone on our homestead, possibly with small children. Our nearest neighbor is an older woman who lives alone. The road ends half a mile before you get to our house. Anyone who is on our land or hers has gone WAY out of their way and ignored numerous "No Trespassing" and "No Hunting" signs. If we had trespassers who refused to leave, I would call the sheriff and get out the gun. I wouldn't shoot them unless I had to, but I wouldn't take any chances either, not where the safety of myself and my family is concerned.
 
gardener
Posts: 213
Location: Clarkston, MI
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I think it might be best to stick to the discussion of Trespassing and stay away from whether or not it's right or legal to shoot trespassers. It just seems that has way to much potential to devolve a good conversation on constructive ideas into an argument that will go now where good. I'd like to think that no one at permies would take the, "Shoot first, ask questions never." approach, and that the signs that warn of gunfire are there purely as a deterrent.
 
Posts: 42
Location: SW Oregon Zone 8b
forest garden homestead hugelkultur
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We had a problem with mushroom harvesters when we first moved to our property because our land is bordered by blm & county land. we put up a hedge row of native blackberries, raspberries, & hazelnuts. Also, we put in a gate on the access with a sign; Guard Border Collie on Duty. I use a pack of them for guardian livestock dogs. They are extremely aggressive at the gate but, I don't know if they would bite. Once allowed inside, they are friendly to anyone so far, but the people are first intimidated enough to wait until I greet them to get out of their car. We have had no unwanted people on our property since.
 
steward
Posts: 7926
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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HUNTING $1,000
Per day

By your presence on this property
with rifles, shotguns, or bows
You have agreed to pay this fee





 
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Dear Mr. Bradley,

I am trying to keep you from harm. It is DANGEROUS to walk around, for any reason, on private property, without permission. Which part of private do you fail to understand?

I personally, would not harm you. But I have neighbors who would not think twice about damaging you and/or your vehicle, and/or prosecuting you to the full extent of the law.


Finest regards,

Troy
 
Rose Black
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Hazel Reagan wrote:We had a problem with mushroom harvesters when we first moved to our property because our land is bordered by blm & county land. we put up a hedge row of native blackberries, raspberries, & hazelnuts. Also, we put in a gate on the access with a sign; Guard Border Collie on Duty. I use a pack of them for guardian livestock dogs. They are extremely aggressive at the gate but, I don't know if they would bite. Once allowed inside, they are friendly to anyone so far, but the people are first intimidated enough to wait until I greet them to get out of their car. We have had no unwanted people on our property since.



If I had problems with repeated trespassing, I'd put up a similar sign.

Only mine would read: Attack Geese On Duty.

Let the trespassers find out why there are distilleries in Scotland who maintain flocks of geese on the land around them.
 
gardener
Posts: 5856
Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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I do not know about other states but in Arkansas there is Criminal Trespass, however it carries only a fine of 500 dollars, you have to have your land posted "No Trespassing, Violators will be Prosecuted" My Name and Phone Number are at the bottom of these signs as per the law, you can also use a Special Purple paint along with the signage which has to be every 100 feet. I use the Purple Paint and Signage at the property line, mine are spaced every 30 feet. 20 feet inside my property line are signs, spaced every 50 feet, " No Trespassing, Last Warning! " 10 feet inside that set of signs they find " Trespassers Will Be Shot, Survivors Will Be Shot Again " and directly under that sign " A Former Scout Sniper has You in His Cross Hairs, Want to find out if God is real? "

Since I put them up, only my neighbors, come to the house, and only when they know we are there. There is only one road in, you have to turn around to get out. The Neighbors are deciding if we should put a sign at the road intersection " There Is Nothing Here Worth Loosing Your Life Over ".

Of course we live in a sparse human population area (7 of us for almost 2000 acres and if we want to visit we have to drive/ride to the next house) and we all know each other and are all like minded about "visitors".

The game warden is on everyone's speed dial as are the county sheriff, and local town police.

We do have a lot of space to hide the bodies LOL.

I think that all states should make the penalties far stiffer for those who wantonly step on others rights of privacy.
 
Posts: 319
Location: (Zone 7-8/Elv. 350) Powhatan, VA (Sloped Forests & Meadow)
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@John...

Now that's making lemonade out of lemons! You either get a very profitable hunt club or no one ever tresspasses, lol

John Polk wrote:HUNTING $1,000
Per day

By your presence on this property
with rifles, shotguns, or bows
You have agreed to pay this fee





 
Lab Ant
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Here's a sign I made using Montana's trespass law. I figure at least the honest folks will treat it like they do any official looking sign vs. all the trite, cute, witty, or offensive and threatening signs.



I worked at a company that had a sign in each stall of the restroom that read: "Be considerate of your fellow employees, flush the toilet", and all I could think was; considerate people don't need signs and inconsiderate people don't read signs.
 
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I'm a big fan of psychological deterrents. I used to have a problem with local hunters that felt the right to be on my land. Not any more. Word got around quick.

Ive been meaning to post a couple signs in the back fields that I cannot monitor. They would not be seen from the road. Only if you were already trespassing. Hand painted on old plywood.
It would read...

"A slightly unstable biker with PTSD and a curiosity about cannibalism lives here. I'm looking forward to meeting you"
or
"Warning! Active leg hold bear traps. Please Retrace your steps carefully."
or
"If you are stealing my dear, you will be fed to my pigs to recover the protein loss"

It should be hand written for the personal touch that says to a stranger that they wont know what to expect and should probably go someplace safer.
 
pollinator
Posts: 395
Location: Colorado County, TX, USA. 8b/9a. Humid subtropical, drought & flood prone
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I find that you have to fill the hunting niche if you have a substantial rural property. If you hunt, and/or you have a person or people who hunts your land regularly, it helps keep trespassing hunters off. Otherwise people view it as fair game (so to speak).

We do have problems with city people (not necessarily trespassers, but often people on adjacent properties) accidentally shooting our cows every year. They've almost shot us a few times too. Other than the usual precaution of not going out at dawn/dusk, which most people here practice as a matter of course during hunting season, I have started playing a tin whistle or singing (badly) when I have to be in the pasture during hunting season. Someone might shoot me out of pure annoyance one day, but so far there haven't been any near misses while employing this strategy. Obviously I try not to do this when I know the neighbors are hunting or to do it near their stands.

We have strong community ties, so the neighbors are not a problem (most of them have permission to come on the land anyway) and look out for us against outsiders (as we do for them). It also helps that the people who know us know that we (not me personally, but family members both dead and living) have shot trespassers before, so they stay away and warn others away. Anytime anybody around here sees anyone or anything strange on somebody's land, we get in touch. And since spying on everything and everyone is our most popular local pastime, it's fairly rare for anything fishy to escape notice for long.

We are not exempt from the rural sport of petty thievery, but since people like us it never gets to the level of actually being damaging (the few people in the community who are real problems get ostracized and eventually turned in and arrested). And there's sort of an informal system by which even the people who pilfer your stuff, graze their cows on your land, poach across your fences, etc. also do you favors, so it's not so much actual stealing as a strange sort of hobby in which everyone takes smug satisfaction in getting away with whatever they can, but then makes up for it later and feels magnanimous about it. This is almost all neighbors and extended neighbors, though, so not actually a danger or a real problem.

When I have encountered strangers in the pasture (fairly rare), they usually do not cause trouble or come back after seeing that I am armed (I always have a gun on me in the pasture, for various reasons) and have my dog with me, who is large and unfriendly to strangers and trained as a guard dog. Personally, I would not hesitate to shoot a trespasser if I were genuinely threatened and am not particularly worried over going to jail for it, and I think to some degree people can sense this and don't mess with me despite being a woman in my twenties. Actually, for all but the worst sorts, I think being a woman is somewhat of an advantage; they might get macho with another guy, but I sort of take the wind out of their sails and they end up vaguely ashamed of themselves. I also never approach armed strangers on the land until I have my gun accessible (not in an obtrusive or aggressive way, but just so I know I could get a shot off first). I personally wouldn't approach armed trespassers under any other circumstances; better to just leave them alone.

The weirdest encounter I've had was with a honeymooning couple from France who thought our bottom pasture was public land (it had no gate at the time, just a cattle guard), and had driven right in and set up their tent and had a campfire going right by the barn, in direct sight of our kitchen window. I rode over to question them, and they seemed to take me as some sort of plain clothes park ranger at first. They were rather embarrassed when I explained to them that it was private land, but the guy recovered enough to question whether my gun was a real gun, and if it shot real bullets. Then I had to explain to them that the alligators would eat their Pomeranian if they let it swim in the gravel pits, and that they probably shouldn't swim in there either, and that in fact there were snakes everywhere, so probably best not to move around much after dark. They were very wide eyed and apparently thrilled by all this, as well as by my accent; I have a feeling that I featured as a sort of redneck apparition in their stories back home, riding out at dusk on a tall mare with my revolver and my tales of lurking wild beasts. I ended up giving them permission to stay the night and they left the place spotless when they moved on. I liked them a lot.
 
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