[Chat] trash picking

Linda Forlifer LEF at press.jhu.edu
Wed Jun 1 15:37:13 EDT 2005

I've seen articles in the newspaper about the "authorities" (police,
FBI, etc.) using things they found in trash in court cases.  It was
determined by the courts that, once trash is put out for collection, it
no longer belongs to the individual.  No one's privacy rights are
violated when trash is searched, as I understand it.


>>> daleg at elemental.org 6/1/2005 3:24:37 PM >>>

Generally, garbage or refuse that someone leaves out for pickup is  
still their property. Rifling through someone else's garbage, before  
it's picked up by the trash hauler, is considered trespass.

Taking someone's "garbage" if you're not the authorized trash hauler  
is, basically, theft. Ownership of trash ends when the hauler  
receives it.

So, I would think that Judy is in the wrong twice... once for going  
through trash, and second for taking something from it.

Think of it as screwing with someone's car parked on the street.  
Would you do that?


On Jun 1, 2005, at 2:34 PM, echalmers at mindspring.com wrote:

> Judy--
> I would hope that you would try to find out whose garbage you were  
> rifling and return the money to that person.
> I personally have no problem with people picking up visible items  
> left outside as trash--if no one wants that banged-up table and I  
> can use it in my yard, so be it. But I have a BIG problem with  
> people who "pick" through small trash, since what you call trash  
> picking is one way people steal identities. Not everyone is careful 

> enough about what goes into the trash, and people intent on  
> stealing identies will rifle trash looking for credit card bills,  
> bank statements, and other identifying numbers.
> Thus, if I saw you or anyone else picking through my trash, I would 

> be very angry, would chase you off, and might in some circumstances 

> call the cops. I have certainly called neighbors when I have seen  
> people going through their trash.
> Again, I hope you will try to return the money.
> Emily
> -----Original Message-----
> From: jdy
> Sent: Jun 1, 2005 1:22 PM
> To: Charles Village Discussion List
> Cc: The Charles Village Chat List
> Subject: [Chat] trash picking
> to all you folks who look down on us alley shoppers,
> i got a real bargain yesterday. $125.00 stuffed in a pencil box. in 

> the same aisle was a small Tupperware container overflowing with  
> pennies and some foreign coins.
> sorry-- sale is over.
> :~) judy
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