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Proceedings Respecting Vagrants.
Title VI of Part VI of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
Who are vagrants.
887a. Tramp defined.
888. Proceedings before magistrate.
Examination as to residence.
Peace officers, when required by any person, to carry vagrant before a magistrate for examination.
891. Vagrant, when to be convicted; form of certificate of conviction.
Certificate to constitute record of conviction, and to be filed; commitment of vagrants.
Children begging, how disposed of.
Arrest of vagrants.
895. Private citizen may do so, without warrant.
Peace officer may require aid; duty of persons required to aid him.
897. Neglect or refusal to aid peace officer, without lawful cause, a misdemeanor. Punishment.
898. Magistrate may depute an elector of the county to make arrest of person disguised. If his name be not known, fictitious name may be used.
898a. Summary punishment of professional criminals.
§ 887. Who are vagrants. The following persons are vagrants:
1. A person who, not having visible means to maintain himself, lives without employment;
2. A person who, being an habitual drunkard, abandons, neglects, or refuses to aid in the support of his family;
3. A person who has contracted an infectious or other disease, in the practice of drunkenness or debauchery, requiring charitable aid to restore him to health.
4. A person (a) who offers to commit prostitution; or (b) who offers or offers to secure a female person for the purpose of prostitution, or for any other lewd or indecent act; or (c) who loiters in or near any thoroughfare or public or private place for
the purpose of inducing, enticing or procuring another to commit lewdness, fornication, unlawful sexual intercourse or any other indecent act; or (d) who in any manner induces, entices or procures a person who is in any thoroughfare or public or private place, to commit any such acts; or (e) who is a common prostitute who has no lawful employment whereby to maintain herself. (As amended by chapter 285 of the Laws of 1915.)
5. A person wandering abroad and begging, or who goes about from door to door, or places himself in the streets, highways, passages, or other public places, to beg or receive alms;
6. A person wandering abroad and lodging in taverns, groceries, ale-houses, watch or station-houses, outhouses, market places, sheds, stables, barns or uninhabited buildings, or in the open air, and not giving a good account of himself;
7. A person, who, having his face painted, discolored, covered or concealed, or being otherwise disguised, in a manner calculated to prevent his being identified, appears in a road or public highway, or in a field, lot, wood or inclosure;
8. Any child between the age of five and fourteen, having sufficient bodily health and mental capacity to attend the public schools, found wandering in the streets and lanes of any city or incorporated village, a truant, without any lawful occupation.
9. (Repealed by chapter 381 of the Laws of 1910. See § 1148 of the Penal Law.)
10. A person who has been more than once convicted as a pickpocket, thief, or burglar, and having no visible means of support, found loitering about steamboat landings, railroad stations, banking institutions, crowded thoroughfares, cars, omnibuses, hotels, or any public gatherings or assembly, and unable to give a satisfactory explanation of his presence. (Added by chapter 616 of the Laws of 1907.)
§ 887a. Tramp defined. A tramp is any person, not blind, over sixteen years of age, and who has not resided in the county in which he may be at any time for a period of six months prior thereto, who
1. Not having visible means to maintain himself, lives without employment; or
2. Wanders abroad and begs, or goes about from door to door,
or places himself in the streets, highways, passages or public places to beg or receive alms; or
3. Wanders abroad and lodges in taverns, groceries, ale-houses, watch or station houses, outhouses, market places, sheds, stables, barns or uninhabited buildings, or in the open air, and does not give a good account of himself.
(Added by chapter 664 of the Laws of 1898.)
§ 888. Proceedings before magistrate. plaint is made to any magistrate by any citizen or peace officer against any vagrant under subdivision eight of the last section, such magistrate must cause a peace officer to bring such child before him for examination, and shall also cause the parent, guardian or master of such child, if the child has any, to be summoned to attend such examination. If thereon the complaint shall be satisfactorily established, the magistrate must require the parent, guardian or master to enter into an engagement in writing to the corporate authorities of the city or village, that he will restrain such child from so wandering about, will keep him in his own premises, or in some lawful occupation and will cause him to be sent to some school at least four months in each year, until he becomes fourteen years old. The magistrate may, in his discretion, require security for the faithful performance of such engagement. If the child has no parent, guardian or master, or none can be found, or if the parent, guardian or master refuse or neglect, within. a reasonable time, to enter into such engagement, and to give such security, if required, the magistrate shall make the like disposition of such child as is authorized to be made by section four hundred and eighty-six of the penal law, of children coming within the descriptions therein mentioned. (As amended by chapter 220 of the Laws of 1888, and chapter 66 of the Laws of 1909.)
§ 889. Examination as to residence. When complaint is made to any magistrate by any citizen or peace officer against a person under subdivisions one, five or six of section eight hundred and eighty-seven, the magistrate must, upon the examination of such person, cause testimony to be taken as to his residence, and if it appears that such person has not resided in the county for a period of six months prior to his arrest, such magistrate shall not commit such person as a vagrant, as provided by this article; but
if he finds that such person is guilty of an offense charged in one of such subdivisions, and such person is not blind or under sixteen years of age, the magistrate shall adjudge him to be a tramp, and commit him to a penitentiary, as required by law. On such examination the uncorroborated testimony of the defendant as to his place of residence shall not be deemed sufficient proof thereof. (Added by chapter 664 of the Laws of 1898, and amended by chapter 66 of the Laws of 1909.)
§ 890. Peace officers, when required by any person, to carry vagrant before a magistrate for examination. A peace officer must, when required by any person, take a vagrant before a justice of the peace or police justice of the same city, village or town, or before the mayor, recorder, or city judge, or judge of the general sessions of the same city, for the purpose of examination.
§ 891. Vagrant, when to be convicted; form of certificate of conviction. If the magistrate be satisfied, from the confession of the person so brought before him, or by competent testimony, that he is a vagrant, and has resided in the county for a period of six months prior to his arrest, he must convict him, and must make and sign, with his name of office, a certificate substantially in the following form:
"I certify that A. B., having been brought before me, charged with being a vagrant, I have duly examined the charge, and that upon his own confession in my presence (or upon the testimony of C. D.,' et cetera, naming the witnesses), by which it appears that he is a person (pursuing the description contained in the subdivision of section eight hundred and eighty-seven, which is appropriate to the case), and (if convicted under subdivisions one, five or six of section eight hundred and eighty-seven) that he has resided in the county of .... for a period of six months immediately prior to his arrest, I have adjudged that he is a vagrant. "Dated at the town (or city) of the ...... day of
(As amended by chapter 664 of the Laws of 1898.)
§ 892. Certificate to constitute record of conviction, and to be filed; commitment of vagrants. The magistrate must immediately cause the certificate which constitutes the record of conviction, together with the testimony taken before him as to the residence of such vagrant, to be filed in the office of the clerk of the county, and must, by a warrant signed by him, with his name of office, commit the vagrant for not exceeding six months at hard labor, to the penitentiary or county jail. In those counties of the state where the distinction between county poor and town poor is maintained, the expense of the conviction and maintenance during the commitment of any vagrant committed to the county jail, who shall, at the time of such commitment, have obtained a legal settlement in one of the towns of the county in which said persons shall be convicted, shall be a charge upon the town where they may reside at the time of such commitment.
(As amended by chapter 664 of the Laws of 1898, chapter 689 of the Laws of 1911, and chapter 353 of the Laws of 1914.)
§ 893. Repealed by section 5, chapter 220 of the Laws of 1888.
§ 894. Arrest of vagrants. It is the duty of every peace officer of the county, city, village or town, where a person described in the seventh subdivision of section eight hundred and eightyseven is found, to arrest and take him before a magistrate mentioned in section eight hundred and eighty-eight, to be proceeded against as a vagrant. (As amended by chapter 360 of the Laws of 1882.)
§ 895. Private citizen may do so without warrant. A private citizen of the county may also, without warrant, exercise the powers conferred upon a peace officer by the last section.
§ 896. Peace officer may require aid; duty of persons required to aid him. In the execution of the duties imposed by section eight hundred and ninety-four, the peace officer may command the aid of as many male inhabitants of his county, city, village or town as he may think proper; and a citizen so commanded may provide himself or be provided, with such means and weapons as the officer giving the command may designate.