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Posted by Michelle Dellino | Jul 13, 2016 | 0 Comments

Pokemon go

It's all fun and games until you are charged with trespassing!

The new ‘Pokémon Go' app has prompted numerous warnings from law enforcement. Since the game launched last week it has become an instant national craze with wild popularity. Players can catch creatures (Pokémon) on their smartphone screens while they move through the physical world.

People everywhere are walking, biking, or even driving while distracted by their Pokémon searches. This poses a significant safety hazard for both drivers and pedestrians. Law enforcement agencies are issuing statements, often utilizing social media outlets. They are warning Pokémon players to look up from their phones when walking and to be aware of their surroundings.

In addition to distraction and safety, trespassing is a significant concern. This Seattle Times article describes a trespassing warning from a central Virginia sheriff's office. This is a concern echoed among many law enforcement agencies nationwide. There has been a rise in reports of trespassing and suspicious activity in connection with the release of ‘Pokémon Go'. People have been found at businesses, churches, and government properties late at night and when grounds are closed, in search of Pokémon. Police warn that looking for Pokémon is not a valid excuse for trespassing!

In Washington State, criminal trespassing charges can have significant consequences:

Criminal Trespass in the first degree: (RCW 9A.52.070)

  • A person is guilty of Criminal Trespass in the first degree if he or she knowingly enters or remains unlawfully in a building.
  • As a gross misdemeanor, a conviction may carry a penalty of up to 1 year in jail and/or up to a $5,000 fine. (RCW 9.92.020)

Criminal Trespass in the second degree: (RCW 9A.52.080)

  • A person is guilty of Criminal Trespass in the second degree if he or she knowingly enters or remains unlawfully in or upon premises of another under circumstances not constituting criminal trespass in the first degree.
  • As a misdemeanor, a conviction may carry a penalty of up to 90 days in jail and/or up to a $1,000 fine (RCW 9a.20.021)

Legal Representation:

In addition to the penalties listed above, a conviction of criminal trespassing may result in a mark on your permanent criminal record.

Don't let ‘Pokémon Go' get the best of you! If you are charged with trespassing, it is advised that you contact an experienced, skillful criminal defense attorney. Our criminal defense attorneys at Dellino Law Group will work aggressively and diligently to elicit the best possible outcome in your case. Contact us today for a Free Consultation.

About the Author

Michelle Dellino

Michelle Dellino is the Managing Attorney of Dellino Law Group. The firm was founded on her belief that there is, very simply, a solution to every problem. Her personal practice focuses on complex family law matters including high conflict cases; high asset and long term marriage dissolution; cases involving business owners, IT, and medical professionals; domestic violence family law; and preparing cohabitation, prenuptial, and postnuptial agreements. Both a trained mediator and former criminal trial attorney, she has the skills and experience to take a case anywhere it needs to go, whether that is a creative settlement or intensive courtroom litigation. In her free time she chases her four dogs and two cats, loves the New York Yankees because mediocrity is not tolerated in pinstripes, and travels as often as she can.


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