Is it legal to pick fruit or vegetables in front yards?
No, taking any property from somebody’s yard, including fruit and vegetables, is theft and can be prosecuted. According to state code, a person commits theft if they obtain or exercise “unauthorized control over the property of another with a purpose to deprive him thereof.” By taking fruit or vegetables from property you do not own, you could be prosecuted for theft. We have received some complaints in the city lately of neighbors or random strangers taking fruit off trees planted in the front or side yards of homes. Please remember and remind your children to not take someone else’s food. Often times individuals who have experienced this phenomena mention they would have gladly given away a few cherries, apples, or peaches if the person had taken the time to knock and ask permission. Please remember to be respectful of each other as well as look out for your neighbors. If you see somebody taking fruit, remember you can report them via the non-emergency line and often times, no charges will be filed, but it gives people a chance to be contacted and provided guidance on why their activities might be illegal. Non-emergency dispatch is 801-629-8221