Property owner takes trail cam

mrbananas

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Oct 19, 2021
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Humble kind approach to a conversation usually takes the edge off. If you where wrong apologize and mean it. If you where right don’t rub it in.
 

tak

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Seems like a lot of good advice here. The only thing I'll add is that the landowner seems to want to be helpful and get your camera back. I think the sheriff dept comment could be for everyone's safety. He probably doesn't want some irate A hole showing up at his doorstep. He's maybe had to deal with poachers or just general jackasses before, so I wouldn't blame the landowner for wanting to give LEO a heads up. Probably not wanting to press charges on a good guy. At least that's my initial gut impression.

In for the outcome.
 

Odin509

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You need to know if you were on his land or not. If you were let it lie, if not go after him. This comes from an experience I had as a new hunter. My friend had shot an animal and called me to come and help him locate it. While we were tracking it I was checking on X maps and noted that we were getting close to private property. Just so you know it was approximately a 2-acre lot. I went straight to the homeowner's door and made contact with an adult woman. I explained the situation gave my name and asked if we could continue tracking the animal on her property. She said that we could. I left my phone number and told her to call me if anything changed. Approximately 30 minutes later I received the nastiest phone call from this woman's mother. I had no idea that I had walked into a hornet's nest. The game warden called next. this turned into a week-long ordeal and was almost charged with trespassing.

I did exactly what I learned from hunters education and I still almost got in trouble. The Officer said because I did not come from the address side of the property I was trespassing, even though I went straight to the door. Be careful, know where your game warden stands, are they there for the hunters, or are they there for the land owners? Know, the laws well! I had no idea you need to back out go to the driveway to enter their property. The lesson I learned is.....I will always contact LE prior to asking a landowner permission
 

Rich M

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The question is if cameras are part of the hunt, if they are part of the hunt, then it would be hunting on property without permission.


I don't see it as it is, but I wouldn't have thought of an arrow that ends up on a different property being trespassing either.
Pretty stupid. Imagine if they start trying to tell you that you are hunting at night cause your camera takes pictures at night. Think on that - it's part of the hunt right? You get the point in what they are doing?



OP - You can always check the local property appraiser website and look at his property and where you put the cam. This would give you a little confidence or at least let you know if you screwed up.

If it was on public land - he stole your camera and you can call LEO on him. Not the way to go, but you weren't looking for a hassle now were you?

He may or may not have called the cops - start with landowner instead of involving LEO right off the bat. If you know you were on public you may need to stand your ground in a non threatening manner.

Private land owners do put up with a lot of crap - I owned land and had folks on there every day i wasn't, finding dead deer, bullet ridden trees, etc. It was infuriating. He's probably got folks on there every day of the season and might think you were one of those.

And you'll probably have to let him stop talking before you say anything. Don't be rude, even if he is.

@Kevin Dill is right on. Don't go alone. Bring the warden.
 

z987k

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Give him a ring, explain the situation and ask him what his favorite whisky is.

Randy
This. Getting the police involved is an escalation that just shouldn't be necessary.

If two reasonable adults are involved the police cannot make anything better than you are able to on your own. Only a lot worse.
If he's unreasonable, the trail cam is cheaper than having police involved.
 

Billy Goat

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Pretty stupid. Imagine if they start trying to tell you that you are hunting at night cause your camera takes pictures at night. Think on that - it's part of the hunt right? You get the point in what they are doing?


Well, atleast if only night that's like 50% right.

If we are going to go by stupid then that's a whole nuther can o worms.


I think you would look at a matter of intention. If you are already using the camera to take pictures where you can't hunt, what would your intention be if you were sitting there? To not shoot where your camera is facing or to shoot where your camera is facing?



I get that it's going to be easier to capture pictures on an open field than in a woodlot. You are just trying to survey what's in the area.

I frequently hang a stand on the backside of a tree of what I'm hunting so I have something obscuring me from the quarry, but how would 99% of people perceive how I was hunting? It's what's in front of you right?
 
OP
ClarkHurst

ClarkHurst

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Ok so I called the guy and he was quite sane. I didn’t get a real good feel if he’s planning on pressing charges or not. I kinda think not. He said he talked to the DNR and one of his friends who is a deputy. The impression I got is he was just making sure he was fine removing my camera. He’s says he will give the camera back so I’m planning to meet him on Saturday. There was some advice to take a law enforcement officer along but personally I don’t think that’s necessary he seemed like a good guy.


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Rich M

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Well, atleast if only night that's like 50% right.

If we are going to go by stupid then that's a whole nuther can o worms.


I think you would look at a matter of intention. If you are already using the camera to take pictures where you can't hunt, what would your intention be if you were sitting there? To not shoot where your camera is facing or to shoot where your camera is facing?



I get that it's going to be easier to capture pictures on an open field than in a woodlot. You are just trying to survey what's in the area.

I frequently hang a stand on the backside of a tree of what I'm hunting so I have something obscuring me from the quarry, but how would 99% of people perceive how I was hunting? It's what's in front of you right?

Usually the young LEOs are more exuberant in their interpretations of things and the desire to find you doing something wrong. Making up intents and new definitions of hunting & trespassing is thought provoking for sure. Maybe we need to check what they are being taught at the academy?

In real life you can hunt 5 feet from the property line, watch the deer come across the neighbor's field and into the public woods on your side of the line and then shoot em. You done nothing wrong. You can set your cam looking into the neighbor's property to observe this crossing so you know when to be in the stand/where they cross exactly and have done nothing wrong, as long as you physically stay off the other guy's property.

What about guys scouting and watching deer on other people's property? You drive by 1,000's of diff properties while going hunting, you trespassing then? If you see a big bucks and slow down?

Why would anyone give/allow someone the authority to arrest you based on which direction you are looking and some illogical interpretation of what you are doing and why? Don't let your LEO start interpreting thoughts and intentions - that would be a seriously bad move.

Trespassing is a black & white issue. Either you are on one side of the line or the other. You establish intent once the crime has been committed, not before.
 

z987k

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Usually the young LEOs are more exuberant in their interpretations of things and the desire to find you doing something wrong. Making up intents and new definitions of hunting & trespassing is thought provoking for sure. Maybe we need to check what they are being taught at the academy?

In real life you can hunt 5 feet from the property line, watch the deer come across the neighbor's field and into the public woods on your side of the line and then shoot em. You done nothing wrong. You can set your cam looking into the neighbor's property to observe this crossing so you know when to be in the stand/where they cross exactly and have done nothing wrong, as long as you physically stay off the other guy's property.

What about guys scouting and watching deer on other people's property? You drive by 1,000's of diff properties while going hunting, you trespassing then? If you see a big bucks and slow down?

Why would anyone give/allow someone the authority to arrest you based on which direction you are looking and some illogical interpretation of what you are doing and why? Don't let your LEO start interpreting thoughts and intentions - that would be a seriously bad move.

Trespassing is a black & white issue. Either you are on one side of the line or the other. You establish intent once the crime has been committed, not before.
Photography from a public place is protected by the 1A. Anything you can observe from public to include from in the sky has a mountain of caselaw and scotus opinions to protect it.
 

grappling_hook

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Ok so I called the guy and he was quite sane. I didn’t get a real good feel if he’s planning on pressing charges or not. I kinda think not. He said he talked to the DNR and one of his friends who is a deputy. The impression I got is he was just making sure he was fine removing my camera. He’s says he will give the camera back so I’m planning to meet him on Saturday. There was some advice to take a law enforcement officer along but personally I don’t think that’s necessary he seemed like a good guy.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Glad it seems like he's a good guy. Still seems pretty important to find out if your cam was on public land and/or violating any rules. If it was on his land, pretty nice of him to leave a note and allow you to come get it. If not, and if the mistake is his and not yours, the presumption would be that if you wanted, you could collect it from him and rightfully put the camera it right back on the same tree where he removed it (though it may or may not be worth your headache). In fact, if it was on public land, it seems fair to call him and ask him if he would just hang it back up for you in the same spot to save you the time of going to his place.
 

Rich M

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Photography from a public place is protected by the 1A. Anything you can observe from public to include from in the sky has a mountain of caselaw and scotus opinions to protect it.
That's how I understand it.
 

RS3579

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Apr 2, 2020
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Welcome. Good luck. Please report back how it went. I really hope the owners name is Russ or Eddie!
 

30338

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I bet it goes fine. Might be nice to walk down where the camera was to see where the line is. Be curious if he was wrong or if you made a mistake. Clear the air and move on either way.
 

TheGDog

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OC, CA
Do your homework! First of all find out if your TrailCam was or was not within his property boundary.

If it was, just apologize, explain the way you (incorrectly?) determined that it wasn't in his property, to show you were trying to be "a good boy" and follow the rules.

As far as where a camera points. As long as that camera is on public property, it can point anywhere in the world it wants to. (That's what curtains are for!) That's how paprazzi make their living, getting creative with it.

If I were you, I'd start off that conversation with these exact words "I need your help with something," psychologically it immediately puts the other party into a less hostile state. Then go on to explain how you checked to ensure where you put it is public, and ask him how it was that he determined it wasn't public. Explaining that you don't want any trouble and want to make sure to get to the bottom of this so you can learn something and be sure this kind of trouble doesn't happen again.

Even if where you did put it IS public. I'm sure YOU realize that if this yahoo THINKS it isn't, it won't matter what anyone tells him, other than the cops.

In such a case you might try posing it to him such as "Oh, ok. Well... how much further in this direction would I need to place it in order for you to feel confident it is out of your property line?". Make HIM come up with that answer! Because then he'll have to live by it, and if he then changes his tune you have some ammo to skewer him with legally, if he "takes it there".
 
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