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Garbage Picking Issue Raised At City Meeting

April 24th, 2014 by WCBC Radio

In 1988, the US Supreme Court ruled in the California v. Greenwood case that garbage is public domain.  Loosely translated, that means your trash at the curb is fair game for pickers — and police. The issue of going through and taking items from another person’s trash bags or garbage cans once they are on the street was briefly discussed during this week’s meeting of the Cumberland Mayor and City Council. A local woman was upset that a city police officer, after observing her picking through a trash can, ordered her to stop. She said she was looking for items that could be used as donations to certain charities such as the tops of aluminum cans, as well as other items she might find useful. City Police Captain Greg Leake was in attendance at the council meeting and said that the officer was probably reacting because there have been any number of complaints of certain individuals going through trash cans and leaving a mess on the street. He said as long as a person isn’t littering or throwing trash in the street or on the sidewalk, they do have the right to look through and  take any items from the trash…


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