Willamette Law Online

Oregon Court of Appeals


State v. Paul William Schneider

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 10-19-2011
Case #: A143746
Nakamoto, J. for the Court; Schuman, P.J.; & Wollheim, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/A143746.pdf

Criminal Law: Unless the lease agreement specifies otherwise, a tenant has authority to invite guests to the common area of the property; even if the guest has been issued a written “notice of exclusions” by the property management, which would ordinarily make the guest liable for trespass.

Defendant was issued a written “notice of exclusions” by an apartment manager, preventing him from “entering or remaining on the common areas of the designated property.” The notice warned that if defendant entered the property he could be arrested for trespassing. A tenant of the building later invited defendant back to the apartment complex. Acting on that invitation, defendant went to the complex and was subsequently arrested in the parking lot while cleaning the tenant’s car. Defendant was convicted of second-degree trespass and brought appeal. The Court of Appeals reversed, holding that the tenant had the authority to invite defendant to the common area of the apartment complex, because there was no evidence that the lease limited his authority, and since defendant was acting on that invitation he was not trespassing. Reversed