For immediate release:
July 27, 2015
INDIANAPOLIS - In a ceremony today, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signed House Enrolled Act 1545 (HEA 1545), legislation co-authored by State Rep. Chuck Moseley (D-Portage) that would make it illegal for a person to transport a hunter or fisherman onto private property without the landowner’s permission.
HEA 1545, officially signed into law on April 17, makes the transgression a Class A Misdemeanor.
“We’ve seen this situation in rural areas all over the state,” said Moseley. “A person accepts payment as a hunting or fishing guide, and then he takes his client onto private property, usually a farm, without permission of the landowner.
“The trespassing to hunt is not only wrong, but potentially dangerous for the family on that farm because they would not know that live ammunition is being used on their land,” he added.
“A stray bullet hitting an innocent person is a tragedy that can be prevented and this new law will carry stiff penalties for anyone violating it.”
A Class A Misdemeanor carries a maximum fine of $5,000 and is punishable by up to one year in jail.
The penalties are increased if valuable resources are taken from the property. The providing of guide services to take, acquire, receive, transport, or possess wild animals, protected by law and valued at less than $500, is a Class C Misdemeanor.
Likewise, if a person knowingly sells or ships wild animals, nests or eggs, valued at less than $500, he has committed a Class C Misdemeanor. If the animal or animal product is valued at more than $500 but less than $5,000, the offense is a Level 6 Felony. If the market value of the animal or the animal product is greater than $5,000, then a Level 5 Felony has been committed.
Moseley worked closely with State Rep. Tom Saunders (R-Lewisville) to successfully pass the bill during the 2015 session of the Indiana General Assembly.