Is It Actually Legal To Dumpster Dive In Texas?
I know a good deal when I see it, and sometimes, that good deal is at the bottom of a dumpster. It might sound kind of gross, but I've found some pretty cool stuff discarded in various alleyways and in the garbage behind retail stores. I've never really worried about getting in trouble for it, I mean, it's just trash, right?
But, is it actually legal to dumpster dive in Texas? Or have I been living on the edge without even knowing it...
Let's find out what Texas law has to say about it...
For the most part, dumpster diving in Texas is legal on public property. Things get tricky when you start rifling through garbage on private property. That's a no-no unless you have permission from the property owner. You don't want to get charged with trespassing over a couple of bags of still-frozen meatballs that your local grocery store decided to toss out for whatever reason. So, be careful. Some things just aren't worth it...even if they are deliciously tempting dumpster-meatballs.
Generally, grabbing a couch or coffee table from the dumpster by your house is A-okay. The United States Supreme Court case California v. Greenwood came to the conclusion that once you've thrown something into the garbage, you've abandoned all ownership. It's anyone's ball game at that point.
One man's trash is truly another man's treasure. In fact, people have found some really interesting things in the trash. You can find some funny and amazing stuff that people have come across in the gallery below.
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