City of Butler, PA
Butler County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Adopted 6-25-2009 by Ord. No. 1617]
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
Any solicitation made in person requesting an immediate donation of money, purchase of an item for an amount far exceeding its value, under circumstances where a reasonable person would understand that the purchase is in substance a donation, is a donation for the purpose of this chapter. Panhandling does not include passively standing or sitting with a sign or other indication that one is seeking donations, without addressing any solicitation to any specific person other than in response to an inquiry by that person.
Any person who panhandles after sunset or before sunrise is guilty of a summary offense.
Any person who panhandles when the person solicited is in any of the following places is guilty of a summary offense:
At any bus stop or train stop;
In any public transportation vehicle or facility;
In any vehicle on the street; or
On private property, unless the panhandler has permission from the owner or occupant.
Any person who panhandles in any of the following manners is guilty of a summary offense:
By coming within three feet of the person solicited, until that person has indicated that he does wish to make a donation;
By blocking the path of the person solicited along a sidewalk or street;
By following a person who walks away from the panhandler;
By using profane or abusive language, either during the solicitation or following a refusal;
By panhandling in a group of two or more persons; or
By any statement, gesture, or other communication which a reasonable person in the situation of the person solicited would perceive to be a threat.
Any person who knowingly makes any false or misleading representation in the course of soliciting a donation is guilty of a summary offense. False or misleading representations include, but are not limited to, the following:
Stating that the donation is needed to meet a specific need, when the solicitor already has sufficient funds to meet that need and does not disclose that fact;
Stating that the donation is needed to meet a need which does not exist;
Stating that the solicitor is from out of town and stranded, when that is not true;
Wearing a military uniform or other indication of military service, when the solicitor is neither a present nor former member of the service indicated;
Wearing or displaying an indication of physical disability, when the solicitor does not suffer the disability indicated;
Use of any makeup or device to simulate any deformity; or
Stating that the solicitor is homeless, when the solicitor is not.
Any person who solicits a donation stating that the funds are needed for a specific purpose and then spends the funds received for a different purpose is guilty of a summary offense.
This article establishes a single offense. Evidence, which establishes beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant violated this article, is sufficient for conviction and the prosecutor need not establish which subdivision was violated.