What Does Loitering Mean In Law?
- Marvin Harvey
According to the law, loitering is defined as being in a public place for an extended period of time with no apparent reason. Laws that make loitering in certain places illegal can be found in a lot of states.
To be dilatory, delay, linger, saunter, and to idle. “Loiter” does not signify anything bad or criminal, except when given such significance in criminal ordinance or statute, Loitering laws prohibit lingering in a public area without a purpose. Some examples of loitering laws include:
In Florida, “t is unlawful for any person to loiter or prowl in a place, at a time or in a manner not usual for law-abiding individuals, under circumstances that warrant a justifiable and reasonable alarm or immediate concern for the safety of persons or property in the vicinity.” In New York, ” person is guilty of loitering in the first degree when he loiters or remains in any place with one or more persons for the purpose of unlawfully using or possessing a controlled substance,,”
What is loitering and how does it work?
What is loitering? Loitering is the act of being in a public or private place without an obvious legal purpose. The United States local governments are the entities that create laws that prohibit and regulate loitering. Citations are usually issued to the violators of loitering laws, which can sometimes result in jail time.
What is a “loitering-plus” ordinance?
Some loitering laws have been rewritten, still been challenged – As a result of Papachristou, most loitering laws were rewritten to include specific offenses associated with loitering — “loitering-plus” ordinances. Nevertheless, those revised laws are subject to the same judicial scrutiny as the previous, more generalized, loitering laws.
- The Court invalidated a Chicago gang loitering ordinance in City of Chicago v.
- Morales (1999) as unduly vague, but upheld a trespassing statute applied to nonresidents of public housing in Virginia v.
- Hicks (2003) against facial overbreadth charges while leaving open the possibility that it could be challenged on an “as-applied” basis.
Alex Aichinger is a former professor at Northwestern State University in Louisiana. He has also contributed to American Constitutional Law Volumes I and II. This article originally published in 2009. Send Feedback on this article
Is loitering a crime in the US?
What is Loitering – In the United States, the crime of loitering is most commonly an ordinance of cities and towns, rather than state law. The purpose of loitering ordinances and statutes is to enable law enforcement to take action aimed at reducing such activities as disturbing the peace, solicitation of prostitution, aggressive begging or panhandling, public drunkenness, and drug dealing in front of or near public places.
- Early ordinances and statutes sought to punish people caught loitering more seriously than today.
- This is because there were legal challenges brought over the years, causing changes in the way loitering is handled.
- Law enforcement officers often make a distinction between loitering with no intent to do other harm, and loitering with the intent to commit a crime, or to cause a threat to public safety.
As an example of loitering, when a group of friends leaving a coffee house hang around on the sidewalk talking before heading home, they are unlikely to be challenged or penalized. If, however, the group remained on the sidewalk in front of the establishment for an extended period of time, becoming raucous or out of control, the group of friends might charged with loitering.
Is loitering legal in Sweden?
Sweden – There is no loitering law in Sweden since it expired in 1981, but the Public Order Act regulates what one can and cannot do in public. The municipality decides what rules apply. For example, it is prohibited to drink alcohol in some designated public places. Loitering can be prohibited under particular circumstances.
What is legally considered loitering?
What Does It Mean to Be a “Disorderly Person”? – Under Michigan law, it is illegal to be charged as a ” disorderly person ” in Grand Rapids, or any other city in Michigan. This old Michigan law is very similar to old-school vagrancy laws. This law prohibits vagrants (people who wander around from once place to another place without a means of support).
being able-bodied but failing to support your familybeing a “Peeping Tom”being a prostitute or “loitering” (hanging out) in places of prostitutionloitering in places where illegal business is transactedbeing intoxicated in public and disturbing others or endangering people or propertyengaging in an illegal business or profession (such as illegal gambling)being a vagrantpersonunnecessarily jostling or crowding others in public places.
An example of disorderly conduct under ( Mich. Comp. Laws Ann. § 750.167.) is a person who happens to be hanging around a bus station. At this bus station it is known that a lot of drugs are being illegal sold. A person who happens to be loitering around this place could be charged as a disorderly person.
What is loitering and is it illegal?
Is it illegal to loiter in a neighborhood? – Loitering is the act of remaining in a particular public place for a protracted time without any apparent purpose. While the laws regarding loitering have been challenged and changed over time, loitering is still illegal in various jurisdictions and in specific circumstances.
Is there a law against loitering?
Loitering is the act of remaining in a particular public place for a prolonged amount of time without any apparent purpose While the laws regarding loitering have been challenged and changed over time, loitering is still illegal in various jurisdictions and specific circumstances.
Is loitering really a crime?
Loitering is often viewed as a crime when it is combined with begging or other similar activities. Loitering may occur when a group of friends hangout at a restaurant or other businesses long after service is completed. Loitering is common among teens.