Skateboarding in Uptown

July 07, 2019 Written by
No Skateboarding in Uptown! No Skateboarding in Uptown! GIg Harbor Lawyer Ryan Witt

Witt Law Group calls B.S.


Skateboarding may be a crime, but the act of skateboarding is only a crime if it occurs in an area where the police have jurisdiction to regulate it. Skateboarding in your driveway (or any other place that is private property) is not a crime, even if the City has an ordinance preventing it.


This photo depicts the City of Gig Harbor’s attempt to curtail skateboarding. The problem with the City’s attempt is that it is trying to control conduct on private property. These signs are erected in the “Up Town” area, which is private property. Even if the City had a “No Skateboarding” ordinance, it would only be enforceable on public property, not private.

Possibly Trespassing


The remedy that “Up Town” does have is to alert the authorities that individuals are Trespassing. If there is adequate signage prohibiting skateboarding on private property that is otherwise open to the public, then the skateboarder could be removed. The skateboarder could be “trespassed” and prevented from returning to the property. If they returned, then the City Prosecutor could prosecute the individual for Trespassing in the Second Degree.

Hollow Threat

No one at “Up Town” is getting prosecuted for skateboarding. Witt Law Group’s official, legal analysis: The sign is a hollow threat. It is B.S.


At Witt Law Group, we handle all kinds of criminal defense issues, even ridiculous ones. We defend cases in Pierce and Kitsap Counties, and have offices in Gig Harbor, Bremerton and Poulsbo for your convenience. We can answer your calls in the evenings or on weekends. Thanks for reading.