View Full Version : Just an update to those who are intersted

03-02-2006, 06:28 AM
Hi Folks,
I have been pretty silent lately, but I wanted to update just in case people are still wondering.

I had my "Court date". It lasted for about 5 minutes, the Lawyer and I went to the front Told the folks (Judge, City attorny, etc) what heppened. Not a single person knew what Geocaching was and most seemed to think it was a strange hobby, but agreed it was probably not worth full court, so them passed over the case for 1 year and then it will be dismissed (with no fine and no Court costs)

But, it was highly suggested that I not engage in this hobby anymore (at least for the next year) So I am ok, but I will probaby not be doing any more Geocaching for a while. (execpt to try and clean up a few DNF that I have had. Only 1 of those left) Also I have not decided if I am going to kill my cache (I am almost too nervious to even maintain it)

All Turned Around (http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=d254ebc5-6356-4ac9-9990-d981d786a511)

Anyway that is the scoop. I am still considering the Meet Nature Fish setup, but not sure

Take care all ....

03-02-2006, 04:06 PM
Wow, and folks wonder why comedians find the South so funny!

This is some seriously backward thinking by a court (That's not a slam - I am a Southern boy born and bred!).

I hate that it happened to you.

The upcoming event, any geocaching event really, is a public gathering in a public place, a social gathering, and I cannot see any way you could have trouble for attending.

Your lawyer can best advise you, I certainly am not one, but your update isn't real clear -

If the judge Suspended the case for one year and will Dismiss it if there are no new violations that's one thing... (known as suspended-sentence probation)

If he Dismissed the case but gave you some verbal warning as a hand-slap, I don't think it carries any weight under the law and can't be brought up again.

The distinction between the two is important and you should know exactly what happened and what it means! Ask your attorney for clarification.

My GUESS is that the charge of Trespass was either Suspended or Dismissed, and the judge's warning was to go forth and Trespass no more - emphasis on Trespass, not Geocaching.

Again, your attorney can tell you whether you can geocache and/or attend geocaching events.

If it's any consolation, it is said that everyone gets their fifteen minutes of fame - this may be yours - your case is being watched closely and debated around the US! 8O

That's why we are so interested in exact details of the charges and their disposition! We're not trying to tend to your business, just to correctly understand and thus prevent this from happening elsewhere.

It would be really cool to have a paragraph from your lawyer explaining it in legal terms!


03-02-2006, 04:12 PM
That's great news. I think you'll be all right geocaching, as long as you don't do it in Sherwood. I was so glad when my sister moved out of Sherwood. Now I don't have any reason to go there and I don't.

Will you have to make another appearance to get it dismissed? You'd better put if on your calendar if you do so they don't nab you by default.

Thanks for the reference to "All Turned Around" and please don't take it down. I had never noticed it before but now it's on my "Do the next time I'm over that way" list. It sure looks interesting.

Best wishes.


P.S. Don't bounce any checks anywhere around central Arkansas. You could wind up back in a Sherwood court for that. There are several municipalities that turn their hot checks over to Sherwood for collection.

03-02-2006, 04:30 PM
If the judge Suspended the case for one year and will Dismiss it if there are no new violations that's one thing... (known as suspended-sentence probation)

The above is exactly what they did ....

I am ok as long as I do not get "caught" doing anything that could seem like a violation

03-02-2006, 04:41 PM
Seems like there is still a large cloud of doubt amongst TBTB in Sherwood. I don't want this to come off as a "hindsight is 20/20" but, if I had known when and where your court date was I would have made every effort to at least come for moral support if not to also lend some confirmation of the sport. I've never participated in rock climbing or rappeling but I wouldn't dismiss them out of hand just because I had never seen or experienced them. I would have hoped a group of us would have swayed the court to realize the legitimacy of the sport. I still can't fathom how they found a case for criminal trespass. You were never asked to leave the property. How was criminal trespass determined? Anyway, I'm glad you aren't making little ones out of big ones! STW

03-02-2006, 07:00 PM
If it makes you feel any better, this could have been your story:

Hillwilly's Day In Court
If most of you don't know what this is about this is an update on what happened with Tunnel Vision 1909. On November 2, 2001 Hillwilly's cache was blown up by the BOMB SQUAD in Dorris California. The FBI got involved and charged us with Criminal Trespass and Criminal Vandalism for placing the cache on railroad property. You cannot be within 150 feet of it. This happened to be the weekend of the most terrorism that was suppose to hit all the bridges and tunnels in the U.S. since the 9-11 attacks. There were some people at the cache and replacing the ammo can back on the hillside when the train conductor came out of the tunnel and noticed them. In turn, he called the police and in turn they called in the bomb squad and the FBI. They ended up coming to our house and investigating us and dropped the terrorist charges. The other charges were then filed against Hillwilly. He had to go to court on May 3rd. last Friday and here is the outcome. The judge started out with a 1 hour commentary on every case to be presented except ours in which Tonto, fell asleep and was snoring through it. Hillwilly went up before him and took the newspaper article that was featured in our local newspaper with him and Quad doing Geo-caching and promoting it, along with alot of caches and groups of people with the cache. The judge threw it aside and wasn't interested. He proceeded to start telling him the charges of Criminal trespassing and vandalism. Hillwilly sprayed some gold paint where it wasn't suppose to be. The sentence was then read. It goes as follows: 1 year jail time, 1 year on probation to stay out of any kind of trouble, 1 year license suspension in the state of California, and to pay all the expenses incurred for the bomb squad, the railroad having to change 2 crews out because of a 4 1/2 hour detainment and closing down of Hwy. 97. They had to taxi 2 crew men in to change shifts and 2 crew men had to be taxi'd into K.Falls and put up in a motel for the night then be taxi'd back to Redding the next day. The expense just for that was $1650.00. With all the fines and fees attatched to all of this, the grand total was $2030.00, which we had to pay right then and there. To be kind ,for the moment, the judge told him he would drop the 1 year jail time. He was not to be near the train tracks ever again unless he was on the train. This was pretty hefty for playing a harmless game. Tonto mentioned taking up donations, maybe not a bad idea. The thing we didn't understand was the suspension of his driver's lecense for a year. Pulled that out of a hat. I'm mentioning all of this so it hopefully won't happen to anyone else. If you have any caches on RR property pull them or move them, and you shouldn't go and get any one elses either. This is probably the most expensive cache we will ever do and the most talked about. I want to thank all of you for your thoughts and concern for Hillwilly. Happy Geo-caching to all. Di

This was the event that led to our current ban on caches within 150' of a RR track. Like in yours, geocaching wasn't the problem - placing and searching for at a cache that did not have permission was.

While these cases are rare, they happen, as you learned all too painfully.

I am glad your's ended better than his.

Your original question, something on the order of "Does the cache owner have any responsibility here?" is answered by this example, where charges were dropped against the trespassing cache seeker but pursued against the cache owner.

So yes, cache owners who place without permission can be prosecuted when a geocacher is caught hunting their cache.


03-03-2006, 06:38 AM
I don't want this to come off as a "hindsight is 20/20" but, if I had known when and where your court date was I would have made every effort to at least come for moral support if not to also lend some confirmation of the sport.

I did not really publish the day and time, because I it was not going to be a "Real" court date. It was basicly just a plea arainment (sp?) and in fact we were in and out in about 5 minutes, because my lawyer is a big friend of the court, we actually got in and out before the actually time that court started (I was in and out by 7:54 and court starts at 8:00)

I was very pleased with all the offers os support and if it was going to be a full court date I would have been glad to have to all there, but this case would just have been a waste of your time. Heck, itf it were not for the contitions of the Bond, I would have had the lawyer just file the plea for me, but the bond states that I have to appear.