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Chapter 42—Public and Private Property

42.01 Trespassing
42.02 Criminal Mischief
42.03 Defacing Proclamations or Notices
42.04 Unauthorized Entry
42.05 Fraud
42.06 Theft
42.07 Other Public Property Offenses


It is unlawful for a person to knowingly trespass upon the property of another. As used in this section, the term “property” includes any land, dwelling, building, conveyance, vehicle or other temporary or permanent structure whether publicly or privately owned. The term “trespass” means one or more of the following acts:
(Code of Iowa Sec. 716.7 and 716.8)

  1. Entering Property Without Permission. Entering upon or in property without the express permission of the owner, lessee, or person in lawful possession with the intent to commit a public offense or to use, remove therefrom, alter, damage, harass, or place thereon or therein anything animate or inanimate. (Code of Iowa, Sec. 716.7 [2a])
  2. Entering or Remaining on Property. Entering or remaining upon or in property without justification after being notified or requested to abstain from entering or to remove or vacate therefrom by the owner, lessee, or person in lawful possession, or by any peace officer, magistrate, or public employee whose duty it is to supervise the use or maintenance of the property. (Code of Iowa, Sec. 716.7 [2b])
  3. Interfering with Lawful Use of Property. Entering upon or in property for the purpose or with the effect of unduly interfering with the lawful use of the property by others. (Code of Iowa, Sec. 716.7 [2c])
  4. Using Property Without Permission. Being upon or in property and wrongfully using, removing therefrom, altering, damaging, harassing, or placing thereon or therein anything animate or inanimate, without the implied or actual permission of the owner, lessee, or person in lawful possession. (Code of Iowa, Sec. 716.7 [2d])

None of the above shall be construed to prohibit entering upon the property of another for the sole purpose of retrieving personal property which has accidentally or inadvertently been thrown, fallen, strayed, or blown onto the property of another, provided that the person retrieving the property takes the most direct and accessible route to and from the property to be retrieved, quits the property as quickly as is possible, and does not unduly interfere with the lawful use of the property.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 716.7(3))


It is unlawful, for any person who has no right to do so, to intentionally damage, deface, alter or destroy property.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 716.1)


It is unlawful for a person intentionally to deface, obliterate, tear down, or destroy in whole or in part, any transcript or extract from or of any law of the United States or the State, or any proclamation, advertisement or notification, set up at any place within the City by authority of the law or by order of any court, during the time for which the same is to remain set up.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 716.1)


No unauthorized person shall enter or remain in or upon any public building, premises or grounds in violation of any notice posted thereon or when said building, premises or grounds are closed and not open to the public. When open to the public, a failure to pay any required admission fee also constitutes an unauthorized entry.

42.05 FRAUD.

It is unlawful for any person to commit a fraudulent practice as defined in Section 714.8 of the Code of Iowa.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 714.8)

42.06 THEFT.

It is unlawful for any person to commit theft as defined in Section 714.1 of the Code of Iowa.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 714.1)


The following chapters of this Code of Ordinances contain regulations prohibiting or restricting other activities or conditions which are also deemed to be public property offenses:

  1. Chapter 21 – Library
    1. Section 21.10 – Injury to Books or Property
    2. Section 21.11 – Theft of Library Property
  2. Chapter 105 – Solid Waste Control and Recycling
    1. Section 105.07 – Littering Prohibited
    2. Section 105.08 – Open Dumping Prohibited
  3. Chapter 135 – Street Use and Maintenance
    1. Section 135.01 – Removal of Warning Devices
    2. Section 135.02 – Obstructing or Defacing
    3. Section 135.03 – Placing Debris On
    4. Section 135.04 – Playing In
    5. Section 135.05 – Traveling on Barricaded Street or Alley
    6. Section 135.08 – Burning Prohibited
    7. Section 135.12 – Dumping of Snow
  4. Chapter 136 – Sidewalk Regulations
    1. Section 136.11 – Interference with Sidewalk Improvements
    2. Section 136.15 – Fires or Fuel on Sidewalks
    3. Section 136.16 – Defacing
    4. Section 136.17 – Debris on Sidewalks
    5. Section 136.18 – Merchandise Display
    6. Section 136.19 – Sales Stands