All Content

Posted by: Tanja Trezise on May 27, 2014

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

William J. Carver and Camille H. Sanders, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, City of Townsend.

Attorneys 2:

Joe Nicholson, Maryville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Anthony Damico.

Judge(s): FRIERSON

This appeal presents the issue of whether the City of Townsend (“the City”) properly issued a citation for trespass to the defendant, Anthony Damico, when he exited the Little River onto private property in order to avoid crossing a dam on his inner tube. The Townsend Municipal Court upheld the citation and issued Mr. Damico a fine. Mr. Damico appealed to the Blount County Circuit Court for a trial de novo. The circuit court held that Mr. Damico had a right to portage around the dam and that he was denied this right when he was confronted by an agent of the private property owner. The circuit court further held that Mr. Damico did not engage in trespass when he traversed private property because he was seeking to avoid further confrontation, which the court found constituted justifiable cause. Therefore, the circuit court dismissed the citation. The City of Townsend appeals. We reverse and remand for reinstatement of the trespassing citation and fine.