Have you Been Charged with Littering in Georgia?
Georgia has two different types of littering statutes: littering on public or private property and littering on highways. If you have been charged with littering in Georgia, you need representation. Contact Lawson and Berry for a free case evaluation or to speak with one of our Georgia Littering Attorneys. We are here 24/7 to assist with your case. Just because littering is not as serious as other crimes does not mean you don't need legal representation. There are still consequences that you could avoid with our help.
Littering Statutes in Georgia
First, O.C.G.A. §16-7-42(a) defines littering as any discarded or abandoned refuse, rubbish, junk, or other waste material, or dead animals.
O.C.G.A. §16-7-43 deems it unlawful for any person or persons to dump, deposit, throw, or leave or to cause or permit the dumping, depositing, placing, throwing, or leaving of litter on any public or private property in this state or any waters in this state.
O.C.G.A. §40-6-249 states that it is unlawful for any person to litter on a highway.
Penalty for Littering in Georgia
Whether littering on public or private property or the highway, the crime will be charged as a misdemeanor. It will also carry the consequences of up to a $1,000 fine and up to one year in jail, or both.
In addition to the punishments related to a misdemeanor conviction, a judge may also direct the defendant to pick up and remove from any public street or highway for a mile any litter the person disposed of any and additional litter disposed of by other people.
Georgia Defenses to Littering
The area was designated for the disposal of litter: If any state agencies or political subdivisions have titled an area for the disposal of litter and the suspect is a person who has the authority to use the area, then they will not be guilty of littering.
Consent to dump: If the accused had first obtained permission from the owner of the property, then they will not be guilty of littering.
The owner of the property: If the defendant owns the property where the litter was disposed of, then they will have a sufficient defense. However, the littering must have been done in a manner consistent with the public welfare.
It was in a nondisposable litter receptacle designed for the storage of litter: If the litter is in an area designated by the owner of the property for litter and it is in a container designed for the temporary storage of litter, then no crime has been committed.
What are not Defenses
It was unintentional: The statute does not specify that the littering must be intentional. If something falls off the back of a truck or flies out the window, the owner of the vehicle could still be charged with littering.
Lawson and Berry and their team of Georgia Littering Attorneys are here to help. We have decades of criminal defense experience so let our experience work for you. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.