In Clark County, Nevada, trespassing is only a misdemeanor charge and carries a relatively mild penalty. Many individuals accused of trespassing choose the apparently easy route of pleading guilty to the charge, paying a standard $150.00 fine, and moving on with their life. Not so fast! There is far more to consider in this situation than simply getting out of the courtroom as quickly and with as little expense as possible. A trespassing conviction is added to your permanent criminal record and will follow you for the rest of your life, complicating any future legal trouble you may encounter. The far more responsible action is to seek the legal counsel of an attorney who knows how to use the Nevada legal code to prevent a conviction or get your charges dropped before they even proceed to trial, keeping your criminal record clean.
What Trespassing Means In Las Vegas
Trespassing charges are often the result of misunderstanding or mistake. Many visitors to Las Vegas don’t know, for example, that a simple verbal warning from a casino, hotel, or restaurant employee carries the same weight as a clearly printed “No Trespassing” sign. No matter what the reason or lack of reason a security guard has for ordering you to leave the premises, refusal to do so or returning later is enough to get you arrested and charged with trespassing. In short, this means that a guard who misunderstands your actions can potentially get you a permanent misdemeanor conviction record. A good defense attorney, however, knows how to get questionable accusations thrown out of court and keep your good name clear.
Possible Ramifications of a Trespassing Conviction
There are several problems that you could face if your trespassing charges are not handled effectively by an experienced attorney:
- Even though trespassing is only a misdemeanor, the maximum penalties that a prosecutor can push for are very serious: six months in jail and/or a fine of $1,000. Before you know what is going on, a simple problem at a casino can end in spending six months in a Clark County jail.
- An out-of-town visitor who decides to simply ignore the charges and return home could find himself treated as a fugitive and faced with an extradition order to return to Clark County to face charges.
Even if an individual is not immediately extradited back to Clark County, a later return to Las Vegas can get him arrested again on the trespassing charges long after he has forgotten about them.