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Trespassing

Dear Sam,

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Recently, people in my year have been visiting an abandoned house near where I live. It is dangerous- something in there is cancerous, the walls have lead and there is lots of dust so masks must be worn. The teachers are unaware of this and, as far as I am aware, tresspassing is a crime. I want to do the right thing, but not be called a 'grass'

My question is what should i do? tell or keep it to myself? is tresspassing a crime?

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Sam

Hi there,

It's sometimes hard to know what to do when we can see people doing something dangerous or criminal, especially if we don't want to get involved ourselves. If you think people are in danger or you want to do what you think is right, you should follow that instinct and tell someone. There are ways of telling people like the police without them knowing who you are.

There are laws around breaking into properties. Buildings that seem abandoned can still belong to someone and it's always very dangerous and wrong to break into someone else's property.

Older buildings may have very dangerous things inside and may be unsafe. You can't be sure that a building is safe to be in. It could collapse or have other hazardous things inside like chemicals, electrical dangers and sharp objects.

If you wanted to make sure people don't go there but didn't want people to know it was you, there are ways to do that. Crimestoppers is a free way to report crimes and stay anonymous. You can call them free or make a report online. You could also get a parent or carer to do that for you.

I hope that's answered your question. Thanks for the letter.

Sam

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