Joyriding and Trespass charges in Georgia

  •   None

The primary difference between joyriding and other auto theft crimes is intention. Joyriding is taking a car without intending to keep it. Valets and mechanics can be charged with joyriding, as well as family members and strangers. Joyriding is a criminal act punishable under Georgia trespassing laws.

Ga code Ga. Code Ann. § 16-7-21

(a) A person commits the offense of criminal trespass when he or she intentionally damages any property of another without consent of that other person and the damage thereto is $500.00 or less or knowingly and maliciously interferes with the possession or use of the property of another person without consent of that person.

(b) A person commits the offense of criminal trespass when he or she knowingly and without authority:

(1) Enters upon the land or premises of another person or into any part of any vehicle, railroad car, aircraft, or watercraft of another person for an unlawful purpose;

(2) Enters upon the land or premises of another person or into any part of any vehicle, railroad car, aircraft, or watercraft of another person after receiving, prior to such entry, notice from the owner, rightful occupant, or, upon proper identification, an authorized representative of the owner or rightful occupant that such entry is forbidden; or

(3) Remains upon the land or premises of another person or within the vehicle, railroad car, aircraft, or watercraft of another person after receiving notice from the owner, rightful occupant, or, upon proper identification, an authorized representative of the owner or rightful occupant to depart.

 

A person convicted of criminal trespass for joyriding commits a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. However, joyriding can be a felony depending on the circumstances. A person who damages the vehicle, other property, or causes injury to people, may be responsible for paying for damage or medical costs caused by the crime (restitution). Joyriding with the intent to commit a crime can lead to a felony charge in connection with the completed or attempted crime.

Consent can be a defense to joyriding. However, consent is not ongoing, meaning, if an owner, even a parent, consents on Monday, that does not mean taking the car on Wednesday is allowed, and doing so could lead to a joyriding charge even if the owner has consented in the past.

If you are charged with joyriding be sure to contact experienced council. Michael Bixon at Bixon Law can help, call 404-551-5684 to protect your rights.


Be the first to write a comment.


Your feedback